Thursday, March 12, 2015

Blog # 13- Migration and Difret- Liv

Blog #13- Migration and Difret- Liv

I always feel as though I should approach my blog in a chronological description of my day.  However, today the end of my day that is resonating most powerfully rather than the start.  This could be as a result of early morning “sleepies” clouding my memory, or that so many amazing things have happened since 8am that the most recent is ringing the loudest in my mind.  At any rate, I will begin my day at the end with what I feel was a remarkable viewing of the film Difret.

Our evening began with a reception and networking opportunity in the Ford Foundation Lobby with Cajun shrimp hors-d’oeurves and mini crème bruleé tarts.  Mixed with fermented grapes, a wonderful atmosphere was created, perfect for networking.  There were many in attendance and all were equipped with the mindset of connecting for the fortitude of the development of women’s rights across the globe.  During this time I was able to make the acquaintance of one of the women from the UN whose job is to organize the UN sessions and events.  We discussed how we are born with natural qualities that make us best suited for our jobs.  This is precisely why women make excellent leaders.  We are born strong, born with the desire to nurture and born with the overwhelming ability to be leaders. 
This leads into the film Difret which wraps the audience into the life of a young girl who was abducted with the purposes of forced marriage and was forced to make life altering decisions in her self-defense.  The film takes the audience on her legal journey as she and her lawyer fight the male dominated legal system in order to win her freedom.  This powerful representation of the struggle that women face in male dominant societies provides an excellent portrayal of what modern legal systems face when combating culture and traditions.  While traditions and culture are important, human rights trump all.  Even more powerful than the film was the presence of the woman who the film was based on.  She sat upright while the audience clapped and answered the questions during the panel with dignity.  It was powerful to be in the presence of such a strong survivor.

The second impressionable event of today was the session on migration.  I am more than familiar with the struggles that migrant workers and family face in the United States due to the nature of my work as a language teacher.  

Meeting with other NGO’s from around the world was interesting.  The United States still has the “golden child” ideal in the eyes of other countries.  This was made evident through the questions that the NGO’s posed during our group session.  They mentioned how they lose their citizens to the US and they never come back because the United States are so wonderful and accepting of migrants.  Immediately the two Canadian women at my side and I spoke up to inform the group that the US is not a good country for migrants or migrant workers.  I felt like the expert of the group amongst international professionals.  I was able to share with women from around the world my successful experiences working in a country that neglects and mistreats its migrant workers and help them to develop strategies for their countries.


  1. Liv, your enthusiasm matches what I thought mine would be if I were there- Love your posts and pictures.

  2. HMMM. mini creme brulee tarts and fermented grapes--quite the beginning to a memorable evening. The networking you describe is really fantastic, and I love birds eye view of Beth and the Fellows! Each of you is bringing home so much in those heads. Those reflections papers and presentations are going to be longggg, but I'm really looking forward to them!

    Have a great evening, and a safe trip home--know you must be anxious to see and hug your girls after hearing so much about girls in other parts of the world!