Prior to working in the county government, I worked in the civil society on work that primarily focused on gender issues and women’s rights. Between 2004 and 2010, my focus was on reproductive health rights with special focus on women. In 2010 through 2011 I was focused on child protection, part of which I worked in the coast region of Kenya. Through my work, I interacted with various survivors of gender based violence and was able to walk the journey of the survivors and the kind of vulnerabilities they face. This aroused in me a lot of anger towards all forms of violations against women. During this time, I realized that economic empowerment for women and having knowledge on their rights was critical in improving the place of women in society. I became and still remain a strong defender of women’s rights. Between 2012 and 2013, I focused on women land and property rights to a point of being part of those who pushed for inclusion of women land rights in the land laws that became operational in 2012.

I learnt of world pulse through a friend of mine called Eunice Owino. She is one of the people I have mentored to pursue women’s rights and accepting to hold an influential position in the government. She featured me on her world pulse journal in 2013. This attracted me to learn more about World Pulse and I acknowledge it as a good platform for me to use to improve my digital skills and reach out to the masses.

My biggest goal of participating in the world pulse training is to learn new digital skills and learn how other women have used digital communication to push transformative agenda to uplift women in the society. I am here to learn, share and network. I realized that while I may not be able to reach as many people face to face, or the office I hold may not allow me to shout about certain things that bother me, I can use the power of digital communication to reach out to the masses and empower women and the rest of the population. I would like to voice issues and be an eye opener or change agent by influencing the masses via digital communication. I am convinced that women at all levels of life continue to face various forms of violence and that it takes women leaders in different capacities and initiatives to address the situation. I would like to see increased women’s representation in public bodies where they can influence policies at different levels.

The internet has become a powerful tool of communication for transformative leaders. Similarly, women are predisposed to a lot of abuse through it - cyber bullying, and gender shaming. I believe that various violations against women can be addressed by having more women empowered on how to reach out and push for change using digital communication. I wish to demonstrate this by example. I want to lead from the front.  

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What powerful and inspiring words, Bernadette. Thank you. Your journey of advocating for gender issues and women's rights is commendable. I love that you have mentored – I'm sure the women you have infuenced have been deeply affected by your leadership and have gone on to make ripples in the areas of women's empowerment. Thank you for the work that you do and for being you!

Hi Bernadettte!

 

You are great leader and mentor. Such people lead and mentor by examples and you doing just that. I like the fact that you are haer to learn, share and network. When I read your posts, I feel like I am hearing you speak directly to me. Success is yours! Kepp moving and tap from ICTS as much as you can to fortify your fight for women's rights. We are behind you.

 

Nsah Mala

Cameroon

Kenneth Toah Nsah (Nsah Mala)

Writer, Critic and Teacher

Cameroon

You outlined your belief in digital empowerment very well. You have a great understanding of the power of digital communication, the advantages and the pitfalls (cyber abuse, etc) for women. I thank you for your engagement and for your willingness to be an example and mentor for women. That kind of leadership is what is needed!

Amy

Dear Bernadette,

You are such an inspiration. A very powerful mentor and leader. I really appreciate the fact that you discovered that women economic empowerment and awreness of their right is key to their deliverance from violence. I have been working with women facing violence in Nigeria for the past six years and I am coroborating the fact that women economic empowerment is the master way to eradication of violence against women. We have a lot to learn from you in the community as you also could learn many things from other thriving women round the world that are in this community. Thank you for sharing your story with us.

Warmest regards

Busayo Obisakin

Founder/CEO, Women Inspiration Development Center

Ile-Ife, Nigeria

 

 

Busayo ObisakinWomen inspiration Development center Ile-Ife, Nigeria busobisaki@yahoo.com womeninspirationcenter@gmail.com http://womeninspirationce.wix.com/widcng

Dear Bernadette,

What a powerful voice you have been and continue to be for women in your community. We seem to work in similar focus areas and I totally reckno with that feeling of anger and despair. But, it's great that we are able to channel that energy into educating women on their rights and pressurizing our governments to pass or amend the necessary laws to include women and cater for their needs.

I admire your passion and the devotion you put into your work with women is remarkable. You are very right in concluding that the power of digital communication is enormous to reach a wide audience and empower women. And your move to engage this training is a move in the right direction. While I commend your participation in this training and your commitment to to World Pulse, I hope that you meet the goals for which you are participating in this training. Please, enjoy every moment of the training; learning, sharing and connecting with other wonderful people with shared passions as you do.

In partnership,

Dear Bernadette,

I am glad to learn much more about you though your Introduction here. Your strength, determination and commitment are so clearly deep rooted. I look forward to your ongoing voice in this Group as we put our heads together to stop this violence.

In friendship and in sisterhood,

Tam