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Led by HER: Empower women rights

 

In the mist of the globalized postmodern world some might say, both men and women, that we’re all equal. But events have proven that although the situation of women has evolved it can take seconds to reverse centuries, so as we keep fighting for our future we must be mindful to preserve what we already have achieved. Chiara Condi, Founder and CEO of the initiative Led by HER, talks in this article about the initiative, and how we can continue to empower women and their rights through social innovation.

 

I am convinced there has never been a more crucial time to be a woman and stand up for our kind. And not just because inequality persists today but because everything previous generations of women once fought for is being questioned once again.

Recent changes have also brought out an unparalleled solidarity amongst us by reminding us that assuring our full rights is the only foundation upon which we can eradicate all other inequalities.

Equality through social innovation

The good news, however, is that when we tackle problems through social innovation they can also give rise to tremendous opportunities. And over the next years women’s empowerment will have an exponential effect in improving the economic, social and political spheres. Today, the key is understanding exactly how we can unleash this potential.

Led By HER is our attempt to move the world in this direction by combining women’s rights, innovation and entrepreneurship. We transform and rebuild the lives of women who have suffered from violence by helping them create projects that contribute to the world. Led By HER is about ending the notion of victimhood by celebrating resilience – as well as the power each woman has in the process of changing oneself and consequently the world. Our work is our way of restoring lives but also restoring hope in the world through individual empowerment.

Rebuilding the future to heal from the past

Led By HER tackles inequality in access to entrepreneurship and gender-based violence through a new angle. Where there was no model for creating a future, it proves that through the right skills, tools and networks, leadership can be restored to all women. It also turns out that rebuilding one’s life is one of the best ways to heal from the past. And the process itself has revealed new means for giving more women access to entrepreneurship.

Direct change in improving people’s lives can also have an exponential impact on societal change through awareness and mobilization. That is why we need to amplify more examples of positivity and success.

Led By HER has empowered individuals and institutions by bringing them together around a common problem as well as providing them with the means to be part of the solution. Today, a community of over 200 volunteers, two business schools (IESEG and ESCP), several large companies (AXA, Orange, BAIN, DELL, Google, Starbucks), and an accelerator (DOJO) have assembled around our project. A lot more people follow our work and attend our events. They engage not only because of the difference we make but because of the love we put into it.

Each person holds the power to change the world

The recent tailwind of enthusiasm has pushed us to expand our impact on women’s entrepreneurship and women’s rights. We are working with other communities as well as our own to promote innovative digital solutions to centuries-old women’s rights issues. We have also gathered our community’s knowledge in the form of a blog (Fr/En) that provides inspiring and practical content for all women seeking to start their entrepreneurial journey. We are constantly reusing and refashioning what we have in order to give back more to the world we live in.

What is important about Led By HER is that we believe difference starts at the individual level. Too often we disempower ourselves by waiting for politics and forces that are out of control to make change happen.

Instead each person holds the power to change the world. World change happens first and foremost at the individual level through awareness and engagement. We, the people, have the responsibility to initiate change and through the echo of our actions, ensure that we create a new era of dialogue between individuals and institutions.

And since a world with gender equality won’t just happen, it’s time that we get to work and (re)create it.

Led By HER seeks to encourage women’s entrepreneurship by providing vulnerable women with access to the education and tools necessary to succeed in their projects. The initiative is based in Paris, but runs projects worldwide. Check out this Ted talk by Chiara, on how to rebuild your life around your dreams.