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Women Empowerment


Empowerment has been a huge focus of my life and my career. Raising the voices of those that are marginvalized and disenfranchised - ensuring that their experiences are valued and they too have rights - has been central to my career. Growing up as a Puerto Rican in the US, rarely did I ever feel empowered. I watched the disenfranchisement of my parents. Watched how they worked tirelessly and yet never seemed to achieve the "American dream". My mother - Puerto Rican and blind - was treated significantly worse. Nothing is worse than watching someone raise their voice to a blind person…

Dejah W

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My name is Dajah and I am an empowered young Black woman. I didn't come from much and has endured many financial struggles growing up. I did not let that stop me. I use all those memories to motivate me to do better. I am attending night classes to one-day graduate with a major in psychology and minor in business. I am in the Illinois Army Nation Guard, I am an assistant dance coach, and oh did I mention I work 9-5 every weekday on top of that? I bought my own car this year as well. This is why I am empowered.
There are two things specifically that have empowered me throughout life and allowed me to really use that empowerment in a particular situation that will forever replay in my mind. United Airlines (my employer of 28 years). I started when I was 19. United has given me so many opportunities as I developed as a young woman and grew to what I am today. I was provided opportunities to learn from different cultures in different countries. I was given leadership opportunities that allowed me to grow in my career and become a well-respected manager. My sons - Brad & Eric. They taught me…
My mother, with the help of God, raised 7 children on her own. I never heard her murmur or complain regarding her plight of becoming a single parent. When my parents divorced after 19 years of marriage, my mother took a job working as a janitor at a local school. In addition to her full-time job, my mom enrolled in night classes at the local community college in order to earn a better wage for her large family. Years later, my mom received an Associate’s Degree which earned her a position as an Early Childhood Teacher; however, she didn’t stop there. My mom…
I am daily empowered by the example of the women in my life that continue to work towards their goals. I am a part of a group of single mothers living here on the west side of Chicago that work together to ensure none of us or our children go without and who have a deep passion for the people in our community. The extreme lack of resources we deal with here on the west side present a daily challenge to each of us. The lack of quality grocery stores, schools, and programming for children in our own neighborhood makes the simple act…

Jamie H

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My name is Jamie and my kids have empowered me. I did not feel love from the home I come from, a family of drug addiction. My Granny adopted me and my lil brothers, so I carry her last name. I met my real mother when I was 7 years old. My granny brought us to Chicago when I was 5 years old from New Orleans.  I didn’t feel like I had a childhood because I was always taking care of my siblings.

Devan K

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What empowers me as a woman is growing up in poverty, having strong black women around me to give me knowledge, teach me and show me there is more to life. The right that we have authority to do the same as men, empowers me. It starts with self-love and self-motivation. When I can teach one to do better, when I fail and learn from mistakes. When I can cry, be vulnerable, and refrain from judging empowers me as a woman. When I grow everyday with the intentions to do better and makes others feel better about themselves empower me.