Online vs. offline activism!

Sahar
Posted October 11, 2013 from Iran

I was talking with a friend on the phone the other day and she was telling me about all different and challenging situation Iranian women have, especially in small town and villages. She was telling me ourselves, growing up in the big cities in Iran, didn't let us see these women's challenges and now it is time for us to educate ourselves and do something for them. I am reviewing all the different (in some cases horrifying!) stories she told me over and over since yesterday. I feel so overwhelmed and in the stage of "doing something"! I was thinking about doing online activism through internet but as each day passes I realize it more how I am excluding different marginalized women groups in Iran who does not have access to the internet. I am excluding women who may need more resources to gain their "basic rights" and to raise their voices. This is a challenging situation for me to decide where I want to spend the rest of my life...

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JaniceW
Oct 14, 2013
Oct 14, 2013

Sahar, when one first enters the women's rights space it can be overwhelming as the issues are many and varied. Take time to explore different areas, and to learn about the challenges and barriers to solutions. Over time, you will find yourself drawn to certain issue areas based on your background, knowledge, experiences and interests. Volunteering in those areas is a great way to expose yourself to the challenges at a personal level and to gain a deeper understanding of what works, what doesn't and what is needed.

I have no doubt that you will find your journey naturally taking you to the area you are most passionate about and in that journey, you will find that you support the cause both online and off-line. Personal interactions provide a human connection that engages you in a way that is not possible with online activism. However to raise awareness of and to gain support for the challenges you witness in person, online activism is an effective and widely used tool.

I wish you all the best in your exploration and know that each step will bring you closer to fulfilling your dreams.

Sahar
Nov 05, 2013
Nov 05, 2013

Thank you for the great advice. I really need time to digest all the information I am gaining and find the best way to incorporate them!

ma.chona lasaca
Feb 26, 2015
Feb 26, 2015

Hi Sahar! Its exciting to hear the emerging voices of Iranian young women like you! Its admirable that you have the courage to expand women's space either through offline or online activism . Choosing to become a member of our Economic Empowerement group could be a start. As a Community Champion, I would like to welcome you into our own circle of sisterhood as we embark on our common journey of helping women attain empowerment in all sphere of their lives,

Usri
Oct 24, 2016
Oct 24, 2016

Hi Saharam, really like the way you are feeling. Online platform is popular among women who are digitally empowered and have access to internet. But most of us dont have. So it is equally important to think about how to empower people at grassroots level. How to connect them with the outside world? How to inform them about their rights and the ways they can ensure their rights? This is a journey and all of us need to empower people around you so that they percolate the message further in their community. 

Thanks,

Ushree