The world is at a turning point. People everywhere understand and support the idea of gender equality. They know it’s not just a women’s issue, it’s a human rights issue. And when these powerful voices are heard, they will change the world. The time for that change is now. HeForShe is inviting people around the world to stand together to create a bold, visible force for gender equality. And it starts by taking action right now to create a gender equal world.” ~ Our Mission, HeForShe
One of those powerful voices is Emma Watson, better known as the legendary Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter films. If you haven’t been keeping up with the hot topics over the past few years, then you may be surprised to learn Watson has become the UN Women Global Goodwill Ambassador and one of the forces behind HeForShe.
What is HeForShe?
HeForShe was launched by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UN Women Global Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson on September 20, 2014 at the United Nations. According to Watson, HeForShe is a global campaign that aims to end gender inequality by galvanizing as many men and boys as possible to become advocates for change.
In a recent interview in Esquire, Watson discusses modern feminism and the modern man with the iconic Tom Hanks. What resonated the most with me was the idea that there are so many things the average joe can do to make a significant impact on the campaign. I’d encourage you to read the full article, but the basic message is this – we can all make small changes in our daily lives to help remove gender stereotypes. For instance:
Sheryl Sandberg–Facebook COO, ranked eighth on Fortune’s list of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business–has become one of America’s most galvanizing leaders, and an icon for millions of women juggling work and family. In her Lean In, she urges women to take risks and seek new challenges, to find work that they love, and to remain passionately engaged with it at the highest levels throughout their lives.
Following the success of her acclaimed Third Metric conference, Arianna Huffington, president and editor in chief of the Huffington Post, is writing a book that offers women (and men) a new definition of success, one that focused not only on career advancement, but on the equally important goals of health and well being, personal fulfillment, giving back and living a life of purpose and meaning.
“Unfinished Business is an important read for women and men alike. Slaughter shows us that when people share equally the responsibility of caring for others, they are healthier, economies prosper, and both women and men are freer to lead the lives they want.” ~ Melinda Gates
Our next Immigrant Heritage Month storyteller is Najwa Badawi. Read more about her journey, where she shares feelings of gratefulness "for the opportunities this country has offered me and hope that my story can serve as a reminder that with hard work and faith, better times lie ahead."