Eleanor Roosevelt once said “the future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” That means that someone has to have their dreams in full grasp. They have to know they can dream, and believe their dreams are possible. But what happens when you are not spurred on to dream?
Some young girls have not fully known the beautiful power of dreaming wide awake. They do not know that they can have desires for their lives and that they can explore their dreams. Maybe for you this seems foreign and that is great you have tapped into believing in your dreams. You know you can dream wild and big, even if you’re not sure your dreams can come true.
We have all had moments where we have felt inadequate compared to how big our dreams are. We either got to pursue our dreams or believe we can achieve them because of someone’s encouragement or our own personal will.
We have been working with a group of girls in our YES Girl project who are incredible and also talented. We know this because they have already been showing their creative talent through the stunning jewellery they have made. These beautiful girls have not been receivers to an abundance of empowerment and encouragement. They have not grown up in an environment that champions girls or a culture that prioritises and highly values women.
So saying “YOUR DREAMS ARE VALID” may seem obvious to you, but it is a big revelation to some girls. This includes the girls we are privileged to work with. This girl lives in a world where a boy’s dreams seem more important than hers. Her family may end up choosing to first educate her brother over her. In Zambia, for example, UNESCO shows that 69% of girls start attending school at a later age. Also, in Sub-Saharan Africa, out of 100 boys, only 40 girls complete senior school.
This YES girl, however, will realise there is an echoing support of her potential through our program. She will be empowered through the business and social skills training. She will grow in skill through her jewellery-making. Her studying will then become a reality because of people who support her education through buying her handmade jewellery. This empowerment validates her dreams.
Great inspiration exists in a girl awakened to the pursuit of her dreams. It is even more incredible seeing a glimmer of hope, possibility and discovery of potential in her eyes. So to the dreamer, do not stop. Keep dreaming boldly and chasing your dreams fiercely, for they are not unknown mysteries, but they can be sure realities.