Our country’s economic resilience lies in the blood and sweat of the young labour force – women and men – that leaves the country for foreign shores and an undecisive future. Our micro, small and medium entrepreneurs struggle to sustain their businesses; it’s especially harder for women. The rule of law in the country remains weak and often ineffectual – Nirmala Pant has become yet another statistic, there are so many others who will never make the news while their perpetrators walk the streets amongst us cloaked in false dignity. We again failed to deliver on gender parity when the position of the Vice President went to a man. Women and LGBTQI people almost never make it to news headlines.
In the most recent report published by the Global Media Monitoring Project , the largest and longest running research on gender in the world’s news media, women were found to make up just 24% of news subjects and sources reported. According to this report, this number has not changed since 2010. Women-centered headlines use words that are explicitly gendered. This makes the work we do even more meaningful for us at WOW.
We all carry the ability to make a difference but positive impact during trying times outweighs its normal effect. It goes beyond solving problems, it helps heal, revive hope, and inspire humanity.
When I meet, read and learn about Nepal’s warriors of social change; I am inspired on multiple levels. They give me hope and reason to do the work I do. Whether it is Pukar Bam saying Enough Is Enough, whether its is Muskan Khatun fighting for laws against acid attack, whether it is Bhawana Raut shouting Ajai Kati Sahane or Shailee Chaudhary lending her voice to Dalit Lives Matter, whether it is Dr Toshima Karki joining Dr Govind KC’s protest for transparency and accountability in medical education or Nims Purja climbing 14 peaks in record time to put Nepal on the global map… these are the incredible young people who ignite our confidence for a better Nepal.
Every life is a journey of pain and joy. There are times and circumstances that will test you, push you and mould you. It’s true for all genders. It’s just life’s way. Time is a precious commodity and each one of us only has so much. May we have the courage and compassion to use ours wisely.