Play for Peace

Naheda Shaikh
Posted March 11, 2018 from India
Peaceful me

It was the time when conflict was going on in our area, it was riots in my city and too much tension. After my graduation I started working with the riots affected community, first as a volunteer then as a job. It was not easy for me, because I was born in the family where freedom was there, my dad never stop me to do any kind of activities, no stereo types system was there, while working with the Muslim community from the different part of the area was new for me, even it was my first job. I started doing activity with them, was teaching some livelihood activities such as stitching and embroidery, but for me livelihood was to become a business women, it  was my dream too, to become business women but I gave up and support them, I felt they were more needy then me. 

My struggle was not only with my ethics and ideas but when I come to know that there are so many limitations for women I never felt in my family, I saw they were not allow to speak and share their thoughts with in public. I was also pressure by local community man not to speak too much, as I was so quite young and it was also my job, so I was only observing the happening what is going on. Women were doing only things asked by men. They have to get material but opportunity was not given to them, for that I was worried. And I was a person who never has boundary in life, I play with boys, I ride a motor bike, I was allow to go anywhere with friends. so it was new for me. 

We all were working for peace building after riots, my objective was to build a peace in women community. An event was organised by the local community and my organisation it was 'Play for Peace' to maintain a peace in both the community, the riots was between the Hindu and Muslim community, so the peace building process was going on between the both community. As I was working with both community, as per my development in my childhood I was so friendly with the both community even I am very flexible to be with any kind of people. That was the reason I choose by the organisation,  the event also plan in between both community.  However, it was surprise for me that women or girls were not a part o the event because the thought was there that female can not play in front of public. I asked women and girls that weather they are ready or not, and all of them were ready to play. They never took bat or ball in their hand but the opportunity they wanted to grab. I talked with the community man that we want to play, women and girls wants to play, and they started ignoring me that why you are giving them wrong way, Muslim women can  not play and my fight start with the man. They started ignoring me, which was already there but now they speak in front of me that why you want more girls like you, stop it we will allow them to play.

At that time, I was quite young to understand all this, man are playing too much politics even today also I can see, but at that time, I was so young to understand all, and I got idea I share this with my organisation, the organisation was working in this area so it was also a part of it, I keep asking for the support and I got moral support from them. Finally, we made a team but very few girls and women come to play, but it was happening that was the best part of the event. Still the man was taunting me that you will change our girls, they started wearing jeans which was not happening before, but I was so happy that some changes are coming in the youth mainly in girls. And, we also Play for Peace, we have given different ground to play, at least the change started. 

For me, it was Play for Peace for women more then the community...!!!  

Comments 13

Log in or register to post comments
Obisakin Busayo
Mar 11, 2018
Mar 11, 2018

Hi Naheda
Thank you for your boldness and courage to include women and girls in play in your community. Patriarchy is everywhere, women relegated to the background as if they don't have feelings. I am so encouraged and inspired by your story of courage and tactics. Thank you so much for being there for the women and girls
Love
Busayo

Naheda Shaikh
Mar 11, 2018
Mar 11, 2018

Thank you so much for inspiration Busayo,

Love <3

Clodine Mbuli Shei
Mar 11, 2018
Mar 11, 2018

Dear Naheda,
That was such a brilliant idea and steady way of deconstructing stereotypes that victimize women. Of course women should also 'play for Peace' especially because are more vulnerable in times of conflict. Thank for your sacrifice and the brilliant initiative

Naheda Shaikh
Mar 11, 2018
Mar 11, 2018

Thank you so much Clodine, even the situation was to fight with others, but we were struggling to fight with own community. That is very difficult.

Shofali Agarwal
Mar 15, 2018
Mar 15, 2018

Hi Naheda - by encouraging women to play you are setting an example for little girls to play and know that it's okay to do so. As much as we need to work on fixing today, we have to double our efforts to fix tomorrow and that begins with our kids. They learn best from watching the adults around them. Thank you for your efforts.

Naheda Shaikh
Mar 15, 2018
Mar 15, 2018

Hi, Shofali,

Thank you for motivation, I believe that opportunity is the most important, as we get more we are doing something different as we have to create for others too, the effort was part of it.

Thank you for your words.
Regards,

Naheda

Stella Paul
Mar 17, 2018
Mar 17, 2018

Write on dear Naheda, plan on and inspire on. Much love!

Naheda Shaikh
Mar 17, 2018
Mar 17, 2018

Thank you so much

Love
Naheda

Naheda Shaikh
Mar 23, 2018
Mar 23, 2018

Hey Paulina,

Thank you so much for the lovely inspirational words.

Love

Naheda

Wendy Stebbins
Mar 20, 2018
Mar 20, 2018

You are amazing, Naheda.

It's like you were being "set up" all your life to be somebody who would be a wonderful role model and mentor to women. You have greatness in you. I know you will use it well and make a difference. Thank you.

Naheda Shaikh
Mar 23, 2018
Mar 23, 2018

Hi Wendy,

Thank you very much for reading, I want to make opportunities for others. Is this your baby ? share more pictures, would love to see :)

Love

Naheda

Wendy Stebbins
Mar 23, 2018
Mar 23, 2018

Hi Naheda,

Thank you for writing. The little girl is the child of a woman I sponsored. I am older. Glad you want to see more. If you go on Facebook to I AM ONE IN A MILLION FOR LIVINGSTONE ZAMBIA STREET ORPHANS you will see hundreds of photos and a couple of good videos done by.one of my street orphans who is now in med school.
What are your hopes and dreams Naheda? Would love to hear from you.

Namaste,

Wendy

Naheda Shaikh
Mar 23, 2018
Mar 23, 2018

Oh, nice to heard from you about your work.
one of my dream is also to adopt a child, from orphan house. My husband is already adopted and the boy is post graduated now, got married and living happy life.

All the best dear
Love
Naheda