We Are Sister Stories is a place where women can share positive stories of facing and overcoming challenges.
On October 11th, 2014, a photo essay depicting the various struggles of girl children from around the world made its rounds on Facebook. These pictures focused on the oppression of the girl child in its many forms, including child brides and those working under systems of forced labor. The photo essay gave rise to questions about the media’s depictions of girls and women, and the realization that much of the imagery and narratives surrounding this topic tell stories of oppression and subjugation as perceived by journalists and photographers. Few of these stories come from girls and women, themselves.
Although at Sister Stories we believe it is important for the media to address the challenges faced by girls and women everywhere, we also believe that it is equally important to shine a light on the victories–the stories of strength and overcoming–and to celebrate the tenacity of the female spirit. We believe that girlhood is a time of growth and a time to build agency, for girls to love themselves and believe that they can do anything. For many, girlhood is also a time of joy, celebration, and more importantly, great strength. Throughout their lives girls and women not only face challenges, they also make strategic and intelligent choices that allow them to make the best of their situations. Unfortunately, the difficult decisions and small victories are hardly ever written about, photographed or broadcast. The media’s focus on the negative aspects of girlhood continue to tell a curated story of hardship, but fail at letting these young women tell their stories for themselves.
When we discussed the portrayal of young women as powerless in the media, we decided that we were in a unique position to take action. We want to create a space where young women all over the world could tell their stories, from their own perspectives and in their preferred mode of media. We Are Sister Stories is that space. Welcome!