Home/Guest bloggers

Self-Esteem 101: Dey Ain’t No Betta Than You

2017-12-19T17:21:51+00:00January 21, 2016|Empowering girls, Guest bloggers|

Anjulie standing with her motherShe grabbed my boney little brown biceps, shook me, looked me straight in the eyes and said, “Dey ain’t no betta than you!”

“Listen and hear,” she said sternly, because as we all know those are two completely different things. “Dey ain’t no betta than you!”

My mother, who speaks English perfectly, will unleash her Guyanese accent when giving a piece of epic advice. I could barely listen or hear between hysterical snotty sobs, but some of her strength must have seeped into my subconscious because all these years later I can still smell her French body cream and the cherrywood in her bedroom.

Adding My Voice as a Survivor of Abuse

2017-12-19T17:22:00+00:00January 19, 2016|Gender-based violence, Guest bloggers, Sexual abuse|

Woman looking at cameraI once lived with a man who when enraged would punch and kick me. I was once drugged and sexually assaulted by a man I thought I knew.  Both violent experiences left me with physical and emotional scars.

I never dreamed I would get involved with men who would eventually abuse me. I worked hard, I held high profile positions, I was an on air journalist and a newspaper columnist who expressed my opinions openly and freely in any forum, male-dominated or not.

Day 13: Illustrating How Emotional Abuse Feels

2017-12-19T17:24:46+00:00December 7, 2015|Gender-based violence, Guest bloggers, Women in media|

Illustration by Jocelyne FrankControlling behaviours, jealousy, yelling, bullying, threats: these are just some of the aspects of emotional abuse. You might think that if you’re not physically hurt, you’re not the victim of abuse. This is not necessarily true. Emotional abuse can be just as traumatic as physical violence and lead to depression, anxiety and even suicide.

As an illustrator I express myself through my art and in these illustrations I show how a victim might feel in the midst of emotional abuse. It's as though you become a psychological punching bag for someone else's problems, absorbing the impact of threats and trying to dodge verbal assaults that reduce your self-worth. Your mind becomes locked in self-defence; you are 'up in the clouds' – like the women in my illustrations - and no one can really get through to you.

Day 9: Re-evaluating personal security with the Internet of things

2017-12-19T17:25:37+00:00December 3, 2015|Gender-based violence, Guest bloggers|

Woman using computerThe Internet of things” is a fairly recent term used to describe the network of physical objects or "things" embedded with electronics, software, sensors, and network connectivity, which enables users to live in a more connected world. The obvious parts of this network is your cell phone, tablet and perhaps iPod. But it is also the less obvious parts, such as your Fitbit, your apple watch, your new sneakers that track where and how far you walk/run, your vehicle, your appliances, home alarm system and the list goes on. The Internet of things has opened up a world of possibility. Our lives have changed drastically in just the last 10 years thanks to this network.

Imagine a typical twenty something couple living in their newly purchased home. After a busy day at work they sit together on the couch. She is cold and he is hungry. By using apps on their phone they can turn up the heat and order a pizza. They may turn on Netflix and their baby begins to cry. Both grab their phones and use the baby cam app to check in on the little one. The pizza will be coming soon so he turns off the home alarm while she turns on the outside lights - again all using their phones.