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AW Gist: The Change Agents

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Friday, August 16th, 2019
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This is about picturing the realities in our society.

Just before you begin : This is a discussion between three social agents, three women involved in different social innovations who’ve been brought together to discuss the different issues they’ve solved, the different stories they’ve heard and how we all can become good influencers, good change agents. I hope this stirs a thing up as you read.


Meet the Change Agents:

My name is Jadesola Olumide, I Work with women in rural and urban Nigeria. My organization teaches them to work with their hands to make money, well that’s what some people call skills acquisition. I have worked with over 5,000 women and I am still working daily with women and girls.

I am Tomi Nelson, I am an advocate against rape and sexual assault in the society. I was working in the UK before coming to stay in Nigeria, and I must say I have seen much more than I expected to see. It’s no news that we have a lot to do but it is news that we need hands to make this happen.

My name is Lilian Ukachi. I am a media personality, social media influencer and trainee. I work with women and girls on a daily basis, I listen to them, motivate them to thirst for more and go beyond their boundaries. We have a lot of women and girls out there whose zest for life has been destroyed. It is imperative that we join hands to make their dreams come true.



The Topic: She Cannot Get The Job Because She is A Woman.

Jadesola Olumide: I have had women say they weren’t given jobs because they are women, they weren’t given a position because someone somewhere has a thing against women. It’s no news that we have some shitty misogynist in our society most especially at the workplace but the thing is this, as a woman be badass at what you do. Be bloody badass. Be so good that they won’t have a choice. Make them choiceless.  Some women can be easily replaced than men can, we know that sometimes, family issues can be demanding, pulling the woman left right and centre that’s why it is important that you marry a man that sees your goals and can help you through it all. If they don’t want to give you your rightful position, hold them up. Leave that place to the place where you would be allowed to express yourself. It’s as simple as that. When I train women, I tell them to be brilliant. Don’t stop at average, let them marvel at the things you do. That’s extra in the ordinary.

Tomi Nelson : The fact is this, we have some workplaces that are just against the growth of women, especially of young women. I have met a woman in a certain organization who said, she wants a male boss not a female boss and when I asked her why she said the female bosses are too ‘bossy’ and I’m like does that even make sense? If a woman can utter such a word what do you think the men have in their hands to fly? Most of these people are just scared that a woman would put them in their place, they are scared that she would set the records straight that’s why they don’t want her to grow. I mean, what is the point in seeing that something belongs to this woman and shouldn’t be given her? She didn’t manoeuvre for it, she didn’t pay for it, and she didn’t sleep with men for it so excuse me, what the heck?

Lilian Ukachi: If we had good laws in place that could fight for the rights of our women that would have been a plus for us. We are in a society where the matter of the women don’t matter. A society where when women make complaints they say they are ‘feminists’ a society that doesn’t allow the women to get her rights as when due. All these so-called organizations are supposed to have laws that can back up the growth of every human being in the workplace whether male or female. So that when she says she would get a lawsuit, they understand what is at stake and behave like responsible people. There a lot of organizations like this and guess what? It is worse in the media. Women are often relegated, you see men in the media space backstabbing women, when the woman is doing amazingly well, they say all sort of things about her and that is why it is hard to discuss pertinent issues like this one because most of the men in the media space are misogynists.

Pause: What can be done?

Tomi Nelson : It is simple, I would say, let the woman aspire to be better than the best so she won’t be ignored. Let her be her greatest motivation and let there be laws in place that can enable the woman thrive. It is very important!

Lilian Ukachi: There is nothing like having a gender-balanced society. I keep telling people who think society favours the woman more, I know they are ignorant but this is it, men may struggle but they have greater edge, even as civilized as we think we have come, we still have this issue of gender imbalance, unequal play in the workplace where they think men should be paid more than the women because they think the men have greater responsibilities. Have you met women at all? Since the days of our parents, women have been full of responsibilities, young women who have to hustle to take care of their family, women who have to hustle to take care of their kids’ cos their husbands are nowhere to be found. Women, who have husbands who cannot cater to the home, so what are you telling me? I think we need laws. The woman can be badass but an environment that doesn’t make her succeed would hinder her growth and that’s what we should tackle.

Jadesola Olumide : My sisters have said it all, an enabling environment is key and women be badass. Be good at what you do and make them know you cannot be ignored. It is very important that they know you cannot be ignored for anything! You matter where it matters. In other words, make yourself indispensable in action and we need more conversations like this, more campaigns until we have a gender-equal society!


Till we assemble again, next week.




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