Photo credit: Sarah Chi

Women being seen and treated differently is a common issue all around the world. GlobalGirl Media prides itself on empowering and mentoring young women. The first week of the international academy was nothing less than that. The mentors stood by their aim and empowered young women from all around the globe.

The first week of training at the academy was amazing. We learnt from each other and got to hear the perspectives of young women all around the world. We were empowered through out the week through other women's beautiful work and what they stand for: reporters and activists. We discovered more about women in the media, why they chose to report, what they report, where they come from and what reporting means to them.

We managed to discover ourselves and that we have a voice, and a voice that matters. We touched on issues that affect women all around the world; issues like the menstrual cycle, gender based violence, gender inequality, child marriage and many other issues that we all talk about every day. We also discovered just how amazing it is to be a woman and have support from other women. Women are strong when they stand together and support each other. We also got to see and read each other’s blogs. We got tips about blogging.

Personally, I am looking forward to having a blog of my own, which is relatable and producing a short film based on the topics we already touched during the first week. This academy is the type that every young girl needs in order to grow, discover and understand themselves a little more and learn. It is a great privilege to be in an online room with international females.

AUTHOR: guest blogger, Kamo

Before this week, I knew little about GlobalGirl Media (GGM). I came across GGM on Instagram and saw the post about the international summer academy. As a young journalist, I decided to sign up with the aim of developing my writing and research skills. However, after this week, I have realised that I am going to gain much more.

When I met the group of girls for the first time on Zoom, the geographical diversity was clear. From Afghanistan to South Africa to the UK, the academy truly is international. As we spoke about the issues that women face in each of our countries, my feminist awareness expanded. Although I know that there are gender-based problems across the world, it is easy to be absorbed only by personal problems that you face in your own country. It was inspiring and uplifting to unite with other young women from across the globe and hear their own stories.

In this past week, we have covered several topics, including research and blogging. I particularly enjoyed listening to Bridgit Pickering, who discussed filmmaking. Prior to this week, I had a bit of interest in making documentaries. I have no experience in filmmaking so I have never really considered pursuing a career in it. However, as I listened to Bridgit Bickering talk about filmmaking, I realised that perhaps it was something that I wanted to pursue. We have spoken much about filmmaking and we have watched various trailers, such as ‘For Sama’ by Waad al-Kateab and ‘Motherland’ by Ramona Diaz. It became evident to me that the power of visual journalism can change the world.

I have learnt much from this first week and I look forward to developing further skills. I am also grateful to have met and connected with inspirational young women from all over the world, who are just as passionate as I am for fighting social injustice.

AUTHOR: guest blogger, Isabella

The latest GGM UK podcast welcomes 3 incredible guests, who are trailblazers for women of colour in academia; Dr Neema Begum, Dr Rima Saini, and Siobhan O’Neill.

In light of the murder of George Floyd, the Black Lives Matter movement re-gained the momentum and the support it needed to become a global movement. In the UK, as the protests in solidarity reached the furthest corner, Britain was also forced to reckon with its violent, racist past. We saw the pulling down of Edward Colston’s statue, the vandalism of Churchill’s, and the peaceful yet impactful testaments of Black British people.

These notable, radical moments delved deeper into an issue which is ingrained into our everyday lives: Our education on Black British history. Or the lack thereof. The ‘Decolonising the Curriculum’ campaign was originally student-led, but has become increasingly recognised by students, academics and political figures alike. Until now, some of us may not have questioned the single perspective we have been taught in for our entire lives. But as Colston’s statue toppled into Bristol’s river Avon, many asked why him? Many other slave traders continued to be displayed in public glorification of the British Empire.

The lack of education around these notable figures, and their immoral role in the creation of our country, has radicalised many. Most of us have not delved deep into the role of Britain in the slave trade, and their colonial history, but only scratched the surface. Increasing demand to ‘decolonise’ the curriculum speaks to the need for further education which is inclusive to and representative of a black and minority ethnic population.

Our speakers are highly educated women of colour, who have encountered various perspectives of racism in education throughout their entire lives. They speak of their personal experiences as well as their motivations to take this into their stride. By continuing the conversation and making academic impactful, they are paving the way for a more inclusive education system.

Introducing our speakers

Siobhan O’Neill is a PhD Researcher in the Department of Politics at The University of Manchester. Her current research project explores the dynamics of race, racism and Whiteness in Politics disciplines and curricula in British Higher Education. Specifically, the project explores how racially minoritised students experience and navigate the whiteness of Politics disciplines. Siobhan’s wider research interests include racial politics, race and racism, knowledge production, (de)coloniality, mixed-race identity.

Dr Neema Begum is a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the University of Manchester Centre on the Dynamics of Ethnicity (CoDE). Her research is on the voting behaviour, political attitudes and representation of British Black and Asian people. Neema has also co-written with Dr Rima Saini about the experiences of women of colour in higher education.

Dr Rima Saini is a Lecturer in Sociology at Middlesex University London. Her research focuses on the socio-political identities and lived experiences of the British South Asian middle classes. She is a co-lead on decolonisation in the School of Law at Middlesex University London and has published critical commentary in Political Studies Review, LSE's Impact Blog and Political Quarterly on the topic of decolonisation in higher education.


We bring all speakers together for a stimulating conversation about race, education and being a woman. Listen to our discussion here.

AUTHOR: Dila Yalman

Dila is an Intern at GGM UK. She is an aspiring journalist and currently studies Economics at the University of Edinburgh.

Dila writes and edits for her university's Economics Magazine, as well as for a start-up fashion magazine. She also regularly writes pieces ranging from academic critiques to political reports for her blog. Most of her writing reflects what she has personally encountered and tells the story of real people.

Dila is seeking to assert her journalistic voice while providing a voice for those who do not have one and this is what she aims to gain from her experience at GGM UK.


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