International Women’s Day: Choose to Challenge Lunch Series

International Women’s Day: Choose to Challenge Lunch Series

Week of 8 March, 2021

12:30 – 13:30 GMT

This International Women’s Day we can all #ChooseToChallenge and call out gender bias and inequality.

We hosted four lunchtime sessions where special guests spoke about the most pressing challenges facing everyone, including women, in our society.

Issues such as youth activism; domestic abuse, mental health and resilience; food poverty; and building trust between migrants/refugees and host communities, were addressed through storytelling and inspiration, where everyone can feel confident and empowered to #buildbackbetter.


8 March – #ChooseToChallenge: A conversation with young activists

Be inspired by the passion of young leaders who are choosing to challenge. We invite you to hear the wisdom and leadership coming from the next generation. We ask the important question ​facing many young people: how do you choose to challenge, when no one is listening?

 

Hosts: Amina Khalid and Miranda Shaw

  • Jasmine Godden Melendez (UK)

Jasmine is a 20 year old student who grew up in Oxford and now studies Biomedical Sciences at St George’s University. She has taken part in various types of activism from a young age, as both of her parents have been involved in the climate justice campaign for many years. She and a team of young activists organised a Youth Strike for Climate protest in March of 2019, and she has since joined as one of the editors of Oxford’s Collective Conversationz magazine, where she writes about a broad range of social justice topics.

  • Lina Kacimi Aitmalek (UK/Algeria)

Lina is a 15-year-old community activist determined to bring racism to an end and to fight for human rights. She is in secondary education, but actively engaged in her community tackling issues like hate crimes and discrimination due to being surrounded by injustice while growing up. She has taken part in TV shows to speak about the importance of interfaith relationship and enjoys sharing her experiences with others to make a positive change, as she ‘believes that together we are stronger’.


9 March – Building Ourselves Back Better

How do we build ourselves back better when we have been abused? Roberta Pagliarulo shares her experience of overcoming trauma and resentment to a place of hope and power. Sandra Crathern focuses on resilient, mental health and the importance of self care leading to self repair.

Trigger warning: Voicing the unheard – sharing a lived experience of domestic violence. 

Host: Amina Khalid and Jacqui Daukes

  • Sandra Crathern (UK)

Sandra Crathern is the director of Innavision, which provides one to one coaching, corporate coaching, workshops, and international wellbeing retreats. She is an ACC ICF Accredited coach and author of the book ‘Know The Truth’. 25 years ago, Sandra was in a controlling marriage and felt she had no voice. She has overcome those challenges and is in an amazing marriage with the same man! Sandra realised when she put self-care first it dramatically improved her mental as well as physical and emotional health, and now her passion is to support others on a similar journey.

  • Roberta Pagliarulo (Italy)

More than ten years ago, Roberta discovered coaching and realized that she was living a life that wasn’t hers. After her coaching degree she decided to quit her job as a HR professional and run her own business. Roberta now has extensive experience with top management and executives in multicultural contexts, delivering executive and business coaching as a facilitator and trainer. Her mission is to help others to live the life they want to belong to, to find their inner motivation and balance among body, mind and emotions.


10 March – Choosing To Challenge Food Poverty

Mutual Aid Groups have provided a lifeline for many ​people who have been left vulnerable and exposed by the economic pressures of the Covid-19 pandemic. Our speakers, who are working with organisations supporting vulnerable communities in Glasgow, London and Oxford, ​spoke about how food poverty inadvertently impacts women. 

Host: Miranda Shaw

  • Amina Khalid (UK)

Amina supports different local mutual aid groups and faith organisations supporting families in marginalised communities with food parcels in Islington. She has been with Initiatives of Change for over 10 years and is currently the Head of Programme for Sustainable Communities and a Trustee for Somali Initiatives for Dialogue and Democracy (SIDD), as well as founder of Peace Begins at Home – an international intergenerational dialogue training created to build bridges between generations and policymakers.

  • Muireann Meehan Speed (UK)

Muireann is a Director at Oxford Mutual Aid. Originally from Ireland, she has been living (mostly) in the UK for the past 8 years. She has a background in campaigning and organising, particularly at the grass roots level, including in trade union activism and reproductive justice.

  • Pauline Wilson (UK)

Pauline has been a Youth and Community worker for past 10 years in areas of deprivation. Now working for FARE Scotland (Family Action in Rogerfield and Easterhouse) a voluntary organisation working within disadvantaged communities throughout Central Scotland, striving to raise people’s aspirations, encourage them to become more involved in their communities, create opportunities for personal development with aim to reduce poverty, improve health and wellbeing, create safe spaces and empower individuals within our communities.


11 March – Building Back Better for Everyone

The debate around migration and refugees continues to be the centre of a harsh public debate with severe social and political implications, often causing misunderstanding and an ‘US and THEM’ rhetoric. Behind every migration statistic, there are individuals or families starting a new life in a new place in search of a new home and a place to belong. How can we build back better for everyone treating people with dignity and respect? Amina Khalid and Amanda Figueras spoke about the work they are doing to build trust with refugees, migrants and asylum seekers with host communities and what actions we can take.  

Host: Jacqui Daukes

  • Amanda Figueras (Spain)

Amanda is a journalist and writer who spent more than a decade in the newspaper El Mundo where she achieved many successes. She was a fellow of the UN Alliance of Civilizations program (UNAOC) and was selected as a local project manager in 2018. In that same year, she launched her book ‘Por qué el islam: mi vida como mujer, europea y musulmana’ (‘Why Islam: my life as a woman, European and Muslim’). Amanda has been selected as Kaiciid’s European Fellow 2020 and is passionate about interfaith dialogue. She is currently working with Foro Abraham (Spain).

  • Amina Khalid (UK)

Amina is internationally trained in dialogue facilitation, mediation, communication and conflict resolution and has worked in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Europe. She has been with Initiatives of Change for over 10 years and is currently the Head of Programme for Sustainable Communities and a Trustee for Somali Initiatives for Dialogue and Democracy (SIDD), as well as founder of Peace Begins at Home – an international intergenerational dialogue training created to build bridges between generations and policymakers.


Will you #ChoosetoChallenge? Take One Step is our own challenge for you to take personal action on what matters most to YOU: https://iofc.org.uk/take-one-step/

Facilitators

Amina Khalid is internationally trained in dialogue facilitation, mediation, communication and conflict resolution and has worked in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Europe. She has been with Initiatives of Change for over 10 years and is currently the Head of Programme for Sustainable Communities and a Trustee for Somali Initiatives for Dialogue and Democracy (SIDD), as well as founder of Peace Begins at Home – an international intergenerational dialogue training created to build bridges between generations and policymakers.

Miranda Shaw is one half of the coordination duo for Creators of Peace UK and is involved in facilitating courses on sustainable activism. She has an intersectional approach to activism and is an anti-racist activist. In addition, she has been an animal rights and environmental campaigner for the past 15 years. She has previously supported campaigns to end deportations and is on a personal journey of decolonisation and anti racist learning and has a degree in Conflict Resolution from the University of Bradford.

Jacqui Daukes is currently the Partnering Manager for IofC UK where her work includes relational activism and delivering training for Refugees as Re-Builders on Dialogue for Social Cohesion. Jacqui has worked in retail, catering, cross-cultural community development, publishing and the performing arts. Inspired by the Dalai Lama’s call for the world to resolve conflict through dialogue she undertook academic studies of religion & gender, attaining her PhD in 2015, and training as mediator. Jacqui is a volunteer mediator and trustee for Croydon Community Mediation.

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