by Kimani Torres

Since the beginning of time, women have demonstrated their strength, resilience and overall ability to thrive in any environment. From the likes of Susan B Anthony, Sojourner Truth, Eleanor Roosevelt and modern-day Kamala Harris, we have proven that we can both fight for what we believe in and hold some of the highest professional positions in the world. We continue to be trailblazers, breaking barriers and challenging the patriarchy.

Despite the many advances we have made, we remain marginalized and our talents undermined. Authoritative figures have this prehistoric notion that a woman’s place is in the house to be child-bearers and homemakers. Though we have chosen to educate ourselves, often balancing domestic and professional lives, we are still being paid less than men who hold the very same position and overlooked for qualified advancement solely because of our gender.

The pandemic has resulted in the loss of many jobs, forcing our women back into the domestic shell. There has also been an influx of gender-based violence cases as women are now trapped with abusive partners and no support from family and friends. Shelters and support centres have also closed leaving us to endure a nightmare within a nightmare.

The world may have shut down, but the work does not cease. We must find creative solutions to keep protecting and empowering our women during and after the pandemic. We need to lobby for female-focused funding to create and maintain safe spaces for the vulnerable and push for gender parity across the board. Despite the many challenges that we have faced, we continue to be the voice of social change; fighting for fundamental fights, determined to make a difference.

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