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6 Days of Inspiring Women

December 09, 2018 • Veronica Kimani

This December, Kasha brings to you our favourite ‘things’ with 6 Days of Kasha!

This includes a range of exciting gift box ideas- see our post on 6 gift ideas for your family up country special moments at Kasha- to give you an insight on the hard work that goes into day to day operations and of course to share the laughs that continue to build our incredible team! In this post, we’ll be staying true to the spirit of thanksgiving this festive season and share with you women who inspired us to keep pushing through 2018 and beyond.

 

  1. Gabrielle Union-Wade

We know the beautiful new Mama from the hit BET series, Being Mary Jane and as Isis from the movie Love and Basketball. It’s hard to deny that we don’t return to this representation of Black Love portrayed in this film even after teen-hood. An American actress, and activist, Mrs Wade shows us that it’s possible to do it all. Her voice on sexual assault and women’s reproductive health continues to hold victims of abuse across the world with tenderness and care- making space for healing, truth and the reminder that we are here and we believe women.

In this post, we would like to put the spotlight on now author- Gabrielle Union- Wade following the release of her New York Bestseller, We’re going To Need More Wine! Just when we were here for all she does, she shared with us her truthful and insightful account on race, love and hardships she has encountered in her life. Just like she lives her life, this book inspires us to believe in our dreams and live our most authentic lives.

Now ladies, the part of the book that blew us away all the way out of this planet with slight giggles and a huge sighhhhh of relief was Gabrielle’s honest recalling of an experience she had at a drug-store following a trip to get some treatment for a yeast infection. I still smile at reading something so relatable within the tropes of perfection that we as a society have created for our celebrities. What a powerful way to normalise everyday experiences women across the world go through all while challenging harmful beliefs that we should be shameful when it comes to our daily feminine needs.

This post is to say thank you to the new mama for sharing We’re Going To Need More Wine which like all her work spills buckets of beauty and truth also known as, Black Girl Magic. We celebrate you for sharing in Kasha’s vision for women. To the rest of the world, it’s 2018 and time for us to live free of shame and stigma when it comes to investing in, and caring for our personal and sexual health.

 

  1. Mary Keitany 

Having returned to the track after the birth of her beautiful daughter Samantha Jerop in 2013, our Kenyan Heroine- Mary Keitany continued her winning streak in NYC a year later making 2018 her fourth win at the NYC Marathon!!! Her determination, dedication and drive (literally) cannot be matched.

Described as ‘Superwoman‘ for the many ways she confirms that a woman can shine in more than one way, Mary Keitany continues to inspire on and off the track too with her initiatives aimed at supporting schools in her community that connect to her humble upbringings and her dreams of being a role model for children who grew up with less than the necessities offered by a city life as her own childhood revealed to her first-hand the challenges and hardships faced by a community with social-economic barriers. We honour her for opening the Mary Keitany Shoe4Africa School in Torokwonin, Baringo County, Kenyan in August 2018 and for the leadership she represent.

 

  1. Meaza Ashenafi

With extensive background in law and legal advocacy, Ethiopian Meaza puts her beautiful country filled with rich history and a hard working people in the light in ways often misrepresented in the media while bringing to light the cultural barriers ingrained in the society which subject women to violence.

Having founded Ethiopia’s first women’s bank, “Enat Bank,” or “Mother Bank” in Amharic, Meaza works to ensure that women in lower and middle income levels of society can access finances and creates a platform to discuss other structural barriers including policies which affect women directly.

Access to finance is one of the ways that can address policy measures. It’s time to address the challenges women encounter in all levels of society from access to education in primary school to the structural disadvantages that come in the way of us actualising our dreams. As a young business woman, Meaza Ashenafi reminds us that it is profitable to focus on women and more importantly, women are the future market!!!

Having served as a Judge, the Chair of the Women’s Bank in Ethiopia, we are so excited to watch Meaza Ashenafi claim the throne following her appointment as the first woman president of the Supreme Court this November. She champions the beauty of working with progressive women in spaces of leaderships changing narratives that suggest the legal, business and financial spaces are gendered- in most cases than not, excluding us women.

You don’t believe that The Future Is Female^™? I can confirm to you today from working at Kasha which has a woman led leadership, that not only are we talking money matters, sitting at the table with global investors and sharing our voices loud and clear in engineering rooms but we are doing this all while building sisterhoods! Thank you Meaza Ashenafi for leading the way in terms of gender inclusivity.

 

4. Danai Gurira

Who else to better be awarded the role of Goodwill Ambassador than the fiercely loved (and loving) Danai Gurira- also referred to as “General Okoye” by fans of the phenomenal Marvel, Black Panther!

Reading and writing on American-Zimbabwean Danai Gurira brought me to tears. Her words fill my screen with power and assertiveness, strength and a deep fearless vulnerability. Her constant use of the term “reclaiming blackness” pierced through me each time I came across her using it on multiple TV interviews. Her hope and sense of responsibility to be a role model for those who are rising and deep gratitude for those whose shoulders she stood on to gain her success makes her an inspiration to all of us. Her fire for achieving Gender Equality and desire to tell stories is infectious! Gurira captures this in the pride she carries in her own identity as an African woman truly defining what Black Self Love looks like and WHY it matters.

Danai Gurira’s new role as UN Women Goodwill Ambassador will allow her to have the access to spaces of power where she can continue to champion women’s rights and inequalities faced, and to address the urgency of sexual violence against women on a global platform!

We celebrate you, Queen.

 

5. Louise Mushikiwabo 

Congratulations to the awe inspiring Louise Mushikiwabo for her newly elected role as Secretary-General of Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (OIF). She served as the Minister of Foreign Affairs in Rwanda, having been invited by President Paul Kagame to join the government. Her passion in Conflict Resolution has shaped her professional journey also documented in a book she co-authored in 2016 titled, “Rwanda Means the Universe” and described as an intergenerational and autobiographical socio-historical memoir by The New Times.

Listed as one of the most influential African personalities, Kasha would like to honour the incredible Louise Mushikiwabo for her new role and join in celebrations which have taken the world by storm. With tweets and messages of support from politicians across the world and her supporters here in the continent, Louise Mushikiwabo is building a powerful legacy and it’s clear that we’re all rooting for her.

 

6. Karen Bugingo

Karen Bugingo wrote a heartfelt novel about surviving cancer. We are taking her level of courage with us in 2019, that’s for sure!

In her book ‘My Name is Life’, Bugingo allows us in to her journey with a disease not many may have the inside story on. She challenges us to inform ourselves on the everyday challenges our sisters and brothers battling the disease go through every day, all while sharing a story of hope, faith and a type of strength we all attest is out of this world.

We thank you not only for the encouragement you’ve brought to people fighting cancer and also for the impact you’ve made in the writing world- inspiring many young women to believe in themselves.

In the words of Maya Angelou, “courage is the most important of all the virtues, because without courage you can’t practice any other virtue consistently.” We celebrate you for embodying this, Karen Bugingo!

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