The AWID forum 2012 was awash with young, passionate feminists, ready to engage in conversation and collaboration with anyone and everyone they came across. I spent much of my time at the forum at the Young Feminist Corner, which acted as a space for the under 35 set to meet and share. I first met Paulini from Fiji, who helped organize the “Corner.” At 24, Paulini is about to open Fiji’s first gymnastics facility. Apparently, in Fiji there are not many outlets for community and fun for girls; Paulini wants to change that and empower those girls with a sport she loves. What a smart girl living out loud!
Also in the Young Feminist Corner, I met two friends my age whose moms were also at the forum; one was from California, one from Paris, France. Our conversation revolved around the extreme shock that we felt as westerners at the forum. Every day we heard stories of women dying for their rights or of women who being raped for sport. What do we do as women from such privileged countries? How do we respond? It is a tough question to answer, and is a conversation we are not searching for alone. Young feminists like Aaliyah are responding by writing newspaper articles on activists working towards justice- showing all of us that you are never too young to have a voice! I am responding to this overwhelming call to action by listening and sharing these stories in hopes that others will be inspired to action, too.