VOF 2016: Personal & community resource am most proud of.

Marie-Claire Kuja
Posted March 29, 2016 from United States
An asset from my mentor
My lovely mentor Sarah Whitten gifted me with this book last month.I call it my empowerment Bible as everything empowerment is found in it.
Yet another great resource
Yet another great resource : Here is another book given to me by my mentor titled "Powered By You-13 Empowerment Principles for Teen Girls". My mentor is packaging me so well for my women and girls in Cameroon I must really admit. She personally co-authored this book and it's packed with wisdom. (1/3)

Working on my resource map has really been a great experience and an eye opener. I discovered quite a number of assets I already have and also those I will need to have to make my vision come true. When asked to write about one of the personal or community resources we are most proud of as VOF 2016, I immediately thought about my life’s journey and the movement I have created in my community empowering young women to stay on track in school and reach their full potential –A great reminder that I am the personal and community resource I am most proud of.

I started my work empowering women and girls based on my personal experience because I came to realize that the more I was using my story and voice to empower others, the more empowered and redeemed I became. There was so much power, healing, strength and courage all interwoven in my voice. Once I was able to surmount the courage and start to use my voice, it became a point of light to so many still stuck in the shackles of low self-esteem.

My Resource Map

One of the questions we were asked in our Empowerment model class was, “How much does our belief in the universe, a higher power, God, or our own words supports us”?

1) My first and greatest resource is my creator.

I have been reminded so many times about the willingness to trust in something larger than myself. I have learned over the years to sit still and listen because it is in that stillness that we hear with our hears, hearts and minds what our assignments or purpose in life is.God is at the center of my existence and work as He made all of us for a divine purpose and blessed us with great gifts and talents. I am so glad I found mine. What an opportunity to serve humanity with what I have. By listening and obeying, I triumphed from a girl who was once treated like an outcast to become a role model to girls in my community.

2) My voice

My voice has been my strongest asset as I use it both verbally as a motivational speaker in numerous panels and in writing inspirational books and articles on self-esteem and other empowerment related issues pertaining to women and girls.

3) My Family! My cheering squad

I have had the support of my immediate family who have been like my cheering squad. Our team is still very young one made up of my son and selected friends who act like fuel and sources of inspiration. I have a sisterhood who supports and nurtures my vision to grow.

4) At the community level

  • I have had the support of radio and TV stations with incredible people who have proven that help is still available for causes such as mind.
  • The Fomunuyoh Family radio in Bamenda Cameroon which has welcomed me as a guest on several occasions to talk about my programs and even covered the first edition of millennial empowerment conference free of charge. The CEO of the radio station has also been of great help.
  • Ndefcam radio Bamenda Cameroon has also welcomed me on a great panel they have every Saturday morning.
  • Morning Safari ( CRTV radio)
  • CRTV radio Bamenda
  • I have also had the support of Cameroon Radio and Television CRTV (national - Hello Tuesday show)
  • Newspapers like The Journal has also been of great support.
  • Dr.Nick the CEO of St Louis University who has donated his school for us to use for our conference.
  • Help from traditional chiefs in my community
  • All these helped me a great deal amplifying my voice and my work with women and girls.
  • Some local NGOs like the Mandela Voluntary Foundation has also been of such great such and other youths groups.

5) At the global level.

I have been blessed with incredible women of good will like Constance J Peak of IMPACT LEADERSHIP 21 who have taken it upon themselves to amplify my voice and my campaigns. Through her my work has been supported by Foundation for the support of United Nations office here in New York.

Through world pulse I have been blessed with a mentor for the first time. Among so many lessons learned from my mentor so far, I have learned how we can enhance the quality of our lives by having a more positive attitude.My mentor is a great resource. She reminds every time we get on skype about having the willingness to look at life straight in the eye and find the opportunity and the constructive solution in whatever life presents. Of course life will throw so many challenges at us. But with positive attitudes we can rise above anything. I have fallen so many times and have made so many mistakes but my attitude has been to keep going without giving up until I reach the finish line. Our attitude towards life and its numerous challenges should be to surmount enough strength of mind to hold a positive mental charge and not be seduced by the negative. We MUST align ourselves with positive people, the thinkers, doers and nurturers who knows us and our causes and will encourage and lead us towards achieving our dreams.

Through my local and global network which continues to build up every day, I have learned Self-Responsibility which is taking responsibility to learn and grow from the experiences – both easy and difficult – that we have had in our lives

Unfortunately but truthfully, we have a blame culture. We blame to sun for shinning, the rain for falling, our community leaders and government, parents, brothers, sisters, husbands and wives BUT little do we ever take any responsibility for anything. This mind set causes us to be our biggest cheaters. However, maturity is when we start pointing the fingers at ourselves, taking the responsibility and accepting the challenge to take us from where we are now to where we want to be in future. John F Kennedy said,” Ask not what your country can done for you but what you can do for your country”. Change is hard but possible and only start with us as individuals by X-raying ourselves and sorting out those areas of our lives that need fixing and taking responsibility to fix them. No one can fix you better than yourself.

Comments 8

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Mar 30, 2016
Mar 30, 2016

Dear Kuja,

The title of the book says a lot! I like your choice. I used to be "more ears than eyes", but I am working to develop the visual side, and I appreciate your post.

I did not think of going into all these details while listing resources; I am learning from your list.

Thanks a lot!

Marie-Claire Kuja
Mar 30, 2016
Mar 30, 2016

Dearest Elvire.

Thanks a lot for your kind words. To be honest this was the assignment was a little tough but am glad you learned something from it.We learn everyday. Thanks again.

[email protected] Community [email protected] Sub Sahara Africa Group.

Carolyn Seaman
Mar 31, 2016
Mar 31, 2016

You have written an exhaustive description of your resources and this is great. This was what I was doing in sketches during my review of the module and it really blew my mind what resources I had.

Creating our resource map has definitely been an exciting and rewarding experience.

Well done Sister Kuja,

Marie-Claire Kuja
Mar 31, 2016
Mar 31, 2016

Haha Carol. To be honest this assignment was kinda tough for me from the beginning. I found myself scratching my head over and over .But once I got the concept and starting listing what I have as resources I was completely blown away. This exercise was definitely a very rewarding and eye opening one. Thank you sis.Am blessed and powered by your lovely words. Yours truly, Kuja.

Sarah Whitten-Grigsby
Mar 31, 2016
Mar 31, 2016

My Leader! I love what you say here about how in empowering others we become empowered and redeemed. "Redeemed" is a perfect word for what happens in every facet of this process; rising above one's own pain to help alleviate the suffering of others. This is the World Pulse Voices of Our Future journey, the Empowerment Institute experience and the path of each of you, our women Leaders, as well as the process of Mentoring I experience. So, thank you for this wisdom, this acknowledgement, this honesty and dedication to your work. Love,Sarah

Marie-Claire Kuja
Mar 31, 2016
Mar 31, 2016

Hello Sarah.

For a very short time I have learned so much from you.Through your kind words whenever we meet on Skype, your emails which are always packed with wisdom and humor and the great empowerment Bibles you blessed me with recently.All I can really say is a Mighty Thank You.The words of my mouth will never really be enough to appreciate you but my heart will always sing your praises.


Apr 12, 2016
Apr 12, 2016

Hi Kuja,

It is so great that you were able to really dig deep and find all these resource that have helped you be so successful in your noble endeavors. And you have so much more ahead of you!! I particularly relate to you finding your own voice as a resource. I think too often women forget that they do have a voice and that they can use it as a resource. I know there are women who are not allowed to have a voice, and that makes me sad. It is so precious to have the freedom and the courage to use your voice to stand up and make positive change, whatever it may be!



Marie-Claire Kuja
Apr 12, 2016
Apr 12, 2016

Dearest Ashaapu.

Thank you so much.

I bet I didn't know my voice was a resource until recently.I equally very sad about the many women out there who do not have the opportunity to know the resources they have right within their reach.

I hope through my work I will be able to encourage more women and girls in my community to discover the gold mines within themselves.

Thank you so much for stopping by today.Its always uplifting reading from you.

Be blessed now and always.

Yours truly,