YW4A Stories of Leadership: Shadin’s WD2023 Story

Attending the 2023 Women Deliver Conference was truly a powerful experience for me, fueled by my unwavering dedication to achieving gender parity and justice. The conference served as a powerful catalyst for collective action, bringing together individuals and organizations in a shared mission to dismantle systemic barriers to gender equality and champion the rights of women and girls in conflict and post-conflict areas. It provided a fertile ground for intellectual discourse, where advocates in the field of gender justice shared their wisdom and insights.

Photo: Shadin (with mic) speaking at a session during the 2023 Women Deliver Conference.

Participating in this conference allowed me to deepen my understanding of the multifaceted challenges faced by women across diverse contexts and to forge meaningful alliances with fellow advocates in other CSOs present in the space such as MUSAWAH. Intersectional feminism played a pivotal role throughout the conference, recognizing the interconnected nature of various forms of discrimination and emphasizing the need for inclusive and diverse approaches to achieving gender equality.

The conference provided an invaluable platform for gaining a contextualized perspective on the challenges faced by women in different parts of the world. The wide range of workshops, panels, and discussions offered practical tools for local action and fostered inspiring partnerships to advance the cause of gender equality and women’s empowerment. The conference also highlighted the importance of intersectionality, which was powerful to see in action

As a Palestinian young woman, I was particularly moved by the willingness to learn about my experience, while also centering the stories of Palestinian women living under protracted Israeli military occupation and navigating the barriers of a patriarchal society marked by traditional gender norms.

During the conference, I met Malala Yousafzai, a true inspiration and champion for girl’s education worldwide. Her determination and courage have inspired countless individuals, including myself, to reinforce the commitment to advocating for equal opportunities. This experience has invigorated my determination to drive tangible change and has reignited a renewed sense of empowerment, propelling me to continue my commitment to advancing women’s rights in Palestine. I left the conference feeling energized and motivated to persist in my efforts to end patriarchal normalcy, fortify human rights standards, and promote gender equality in Palestine.

Photo: Shadin with Malala during the 2023 Women Deliver Conference.

As I go home, I will be sharing my experience and knowledge gained with our young women in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Jordan and the Holy Land. I will also apply the lessons learnt such as gender social change actions in the work that I do. Attending the Women Deliver conference 2023 was indeed an experience that I will always treasure.