Home/Women in media

Learning to Hold Yourself Up

2016-04-11T13:05:39+00:00April 11, 2016|Guest bloggers, How to, SHE Magazine, Women in media|

Paper chain of womenWhen I was asked to write this guest column, honestly, my first thought was: “Why me?”
This feeling only got stronger when I heard award-winning journalists Michele Landsberg and Sally Armstrong had also written this column. As I began my “Thanks but no thanks” email reply, I thought of others who would do a better job.
For me, this behaviour isn’t unusual: I consistently undervalue my qualifications and second-guess my skills. Here’s another example. I recently co-facilitated a six-week media workshop for young Muslim women called Outburst! (it’s funded by the Canadian Women’s Foundation). As I approached the workshop location, with every step all I could think of was the person I thought was better qualified to lead it. And during the Calgary flood, my senior producer asked me to fly there to cover the emergency for the Current. Inside, I panicked, thinking of all the other producers who were more qualified to go. In the end, I gulped and said: “Sure.”

Inspire Body Positivity with the Body Confidence Canada Awards

2017-12-19T17:11:45+00:00March 18, 2016|Empowering girls, Guest bloggers, Women in media|

Woman smilingAlmost four years ago our lives changed for the better when we decided to create the Body Confidence Canada Awards (BCCAs) – and we haven’t looked back!

Inspired by outstanding body image awareness initiatives taking place in the United Kingdom, namely their Campaign for Body Confidence (2009) and the inaugural Body Confidence Awards (2012), my partner Aisha Fairclough and I decided it was time to create a likeminded platform in Canada. We created the BCCAs to acknowledge and celebrate people for whom their personal and professional lives embodied and inspired body confidence, body positivity, and body diversity in our communities.

Some Clothes Cost More Than You Think

2017-12-19T17:12:35+00:00March 8, 2016|Empowering girls, Women in media|

As We Are Poster“Girls just want to wear diamonds.”

“Allergic to Algebra.”

“I’m too pretty to do homework, so my brother has to do it for me.”

“Future trophy wife.”

It’s hard to believe, but stores in Canada market girls’ T-shirts bearing disempowering messages like these. Stereotypes sell, even though they’re the last thing girls need.

It Starts With Us

2016-02-18T15:44:33+00:00February 18, 2016|Empowering girls, Gender-based violence, Guest bloggers, How to, Women in media|

Woman reading bookIt seems to me that as feminists we often shy away from any suggestions of what women can do to improve our circumstances, as though conversations of that nature are tantamount to victim blaming. Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In is dismissed as “faux feminism”, and even beloved Jennifer Lawrence caught heat for acknowledging the role she feels she played in the wage gap between herself and her male counterparts.  

I get where this resistance comes from, and I know it’s ultimately a good place. As women we’ve spent so much of our lives being defined as an ‘other’ and told that the injustices of the world stem from our inherent inferiority, rather than the flawed world we live in. The suggestion that we are holding ourselves back is uncomfortable, to say the least, but I think it is important to consider.