My Journey

Usri
Posted November 21, 2015 from India
My Journey

Hi! I am from India. India is known for its diversity, though this diversity doesn’t limit itself only to topography, culture, people, and languages only; but India also has a stratified society based on caste, economic power, the level of education etc.; where powerful people have more say and opportunities than the rest. Since independence India has introduced many favourable policies to bridge this divide and to mitigate this discrimination although the divide still persists.

Among others, one of the major challenges acts as an impediment towards women’s empowerment is socially constructed gender role. Traditionally women are expected to take care of household responsibilities, and often that act as a hindrance towards their economic empowerment. When it comes to career choices women often decide on it keeping in mind their care responsibility. Moreover, because of son preferences; many families often neglect daughter’s education. Thus women often become the victim of situations and find it difficult to come out of that cycle, e.g. lack of economic independence often increases chance of facing domestic violence. Moreover, due to poor resilience power women often bear domestic violence. Even in cases of ‘violence against women’ due to fear of social stigmatization women often remain silent.

I strongly feel that to address gender equality first we need to identify context-specific causes and then suitable strategies may be designed to address those concerns. With that, we need to play the role of the socially responsible individual.

The internet offers plethora of opportunities. But to reap the benefit; accessibility to right technology, basic knowledge and necessary freedom are important. Hence, I personally thrust on the need of raising awareness and to reach the hardest to reach. I follow a collaborative approach with different bodies as it will help the partners to mutually share their resources and to depend on each other’s specialization. In any of my assignment, I try to incorporate a gender dimension as I believe it as a founding stone for a sustainable result oriented project.

To address various gender-based inequalities and related violence I have tried to promote the cause both online and offline. I have actively participated in different forums to promote the cause. In between I have written gender manual for two INGOs so that they can incorporate gender in every aspect of their project implementation. With that, I have actively involved myself with rights group to ensure women are getting right education from the very beginning and to promote importance of getting a conducive environment for their economic empowerment. In many cases of gender-based violence against women, I have helped the victims by linking them with appropriate bodies. While doing this I have tried to use all possible social media.

To strengthen my journey I look forward to increasing my network, to be connected with likeminded people so that together we can work at a larger platform.

Comments 6

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Bernadette Muyomi
Nov 23, 2015
Nov 23, 2015

Gender based violence is so real in our communities. For a long time I used to work on GBV survivors and victims through various empowerment platforms at th community level. I used to think it i something expereinced by certain women, probbly  in a low socio-economic place. Then in 2013 I got into my current position in the government and at that juncture I felt that I was exposed to so much violence and I was not expected to speak about it because I am a leader or that speaking about it would make me look disrespectful. Now I am ont he forefrornt of pushing or women in leaderhip and empowering them as I also seek empowerment to overcome the kind of violence that we do. My belief is that when women in positions of influence are able to stand at the forefront of fighting gender based violence, the world automatically begins to make things better for all other women.

Raquel Daniel
Nov 24, 2015
Nov 24, 2015

I connected with you post because while in the University, I ran a projected on Gender based violence and abuse. I met with women and girls who were abused and some still living with their abusers. It was a traumatic experience but i learnt a lot.

You are doing an incredible Job.

Tamarack Verrall
Nov 26, 2015
Nov 26, 2015

Your article reads beautifully as words from a strong and dedicated activist. Your inner nature to look closely at what needs doing, identifying the range of causes, and making sure that the discrimination against women because of gender stays foremost in your work, all add up to great action. It is so important to know that you are boldly stating the truth: that inequality between men and women is a social construct, not a natural state of things. I am really impressed by your multi faceted approach to creating change. Forming a solid understanding of where to begin, speaking out, writing a manual that can be widely used, finding and connecting with other groups that have the same priorities, and now seeing possibilities of the strength we are gaining with global connections! I look forward to this ongoing strengthening of our shared goals. Glad to be linking arms with you here, sister!

Tam

Michelle Helman
Nov 29, 2015
Nov 29, 2015

I've taken a training that deconstructs the binary gender system used and it was enlightening and empowering, even to self-identify as a woman, as female, and assigned female at birth. It took away confusion and guilt - thank you for engaging in this difficult work and good job for recognizing how context-specific causes are key points.

In beauty,

DeborahEdward
Nov 30, 2015
Nov 30, 2015

Dear Ushree,

I am very grateful to you for your commitment to working against gender and inequality on so many fronts - writing manuals, participating in forums, working online and offline, and paying attention to the importance of thinking abouit power and leadership. Many women aren't aware there are choices and have very little support when they try to deal with consequences of sometimes-too-casual and too-accepted domestic violence. Your work may be something that casts a light on how domestic violence and gender inequality are not only bad for the individuals experiencing this, but bad for our entire culture. Thank you for the many ways you speak up!  

Dani26
Dec 07, 2015
Dec 07, 2015

Dear Ushree

Thanks so much for sharing your story and the important work that you are doing to help stop violence against women. I agree that understanding the local context and working collaboratively with others, alongside a gendered analysis of power and structures, is key to helping to stop violence against women, not just in India but in other parts of the world as well.

Best wishes for your continued work!

Dani