May 18, 2017

"I marvelled at the courage and strength of the girls who are using their stories to inspire change in their communities"

60 women and girls gathered in New York to celebrate the HerStory Summit

Fideline Mboringong

Fideline Mboringong

Global Youth Ambassador from Cameroon

Global Youth Ambassador Fideline Mboringong reflects on a transformative experience when she met an inspiring group of girls and women at the HerStory Summit in New York.

In March, I was among 60 dynamic women and girls supported by some men from LitWorld and Global Glow communities that gathered in New York City to celebrate the second HerStory Summit.

We had representatives from the Philippines, Nepal, Colombia, Kenya, Uganda, Pakistan, Sierra Leone, USA, Peru and Cameroon, who came together to use their stories to change the world.

The HerStory Summit is a key part of the HerStory Campaign, which is focused on creating meaningful experiences for girls around transformational literacy, creative-self-expression and mentorship. 

During the summit, we had diverse activities from community-building activities, storytelling and arts workshop, and visits to iconic sites in New York City like the Statue of Liberty and the Brooklyn Museum. 

These visits gave me an opportunity to reflect on the challenges facing girls and women and how these groups of women are dealing with these daily struggles. 

I was greatly challenged by the work the mentors are doing to bring change in the lives of the girls and I was reminded by the words of Mahatma Gandhi on "Be the change you wish to see in the world".

We had the opportunity to interact and learn from the other teams on how the programme is being run in their countries and the girls had an opportunity to share their stories at CSW61 (Commission on the Status of Women). 

It was characterised by girls from the programme sharing their stories of strength and on how they are strong and on how the programme has changed them. 

I marvelled at the courage and strength of the girls on how they are using their stories to inspire change in their communities. 

These are experiences that could bring about change in young learners, giving wings to their ideas that should be included in education programmes.

Fideline Mboringong

A girl who is in the programme in Cameroon - 14-year-old Wilma Ntsahnikwi Awah - also had the opportunity to travel to the US to attend the HerStory Summit that took place alongside CSW61.

This exchange programme gave her a whole different perspective about life and culture through her interactions with people from different areas, especially because this was her first time leaving her country. 

With knowledge and resources gained from the summit, she has already started implementing a community project to improve girls' education and livelihoods.

I believe these are experiences that could bring about change in young learners, giving wings to their ideas that should be included in education programmes especially. 

I would love to acknowledge LitWorld and Global Glow for making this trip possible. The summit was also organised by them.

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