The New Year will soon be upon as and at Forgotten Women HQ we are busy thinking how we can elevate the voice of women in 2019.
We have a lot of things planned for 2019, including our January Art Walk in which we will be working with theatre company Cuckoo’s Egg to bring to life scenes written by Steven B Williams that tell the story of Edith Mackie’s life, the unsung “saviour” of Wakefield.
But we also wanted to think about resolutions we could adopt that would allow us to help women — and by extension our entire community — flourish in 2019.
Here are our resolutions:
- Let women from all backgrounds take radical ownership of their own lives and stories.
- Listen when women speak. It really is that simple.
- Support trans women unequivocally against acts of segregation and dehumanization.
- Make it a habit to pick media – films, television shows, books and magazines – that have a strong, empowering and diverse female presence.
- Ask women questions about the challenges they face and support them in leading the way toward solutions.
- If you are male-identifying, seek to speak with, not for, women.
- By the same token, if you are female-identifying and in a position of power/privilege, share your light.
- Offer support to women going through the menopause — the gap in mental health provision for women in this bracket is dangerously lacking.
- Learn: It is okay to not know something, and we are all of us learning everyday to be more sensitive to the needs of others. We can grow our understanding by learning about intersectional feminism and what it means to have multiple pressures in a society that divides us by race, class, religion, birth-assigned sex and more.
- Lead with empathy but be bold with creative fury. Being an empathetic individual means finding common ground with someone. Creative fury, on the other hand, is the storm of becoming, of taking negatives and making them positive. The first can honour that as people we are fallible and forgivable; the second can challenge ideas and actions that create discrimination and misogyny with creative activities like poetry and art, as well as direct action like campaigning. We lose nothing by recognising that someone we disagree with vehemently is still a person, and gain so much by using that moment to fuel creative solutions, from micro-level giving people a way to talk about their experiences, up to the highest levels like political advocacy to change our laws.
Those are our resolutions for helping the women’s voice in 2019. What are yours?