Beijing+25 Asia-Pacific Youth Blog

The Beijing +25 Youth Blog is an online space for young activists from across Asia and the Pacific to raise their ideas, concerns and expectations in relation to gender equality and women’s empowerment. Every month, a youth’s submission is posted on the blog. Do you want to contribute to the blog? Find the submission guidelines here.

Jenny Mei poses at her school in Shanghai, China, on Year 9 graduation day, on 17 June 2021. Photo courtesy of Angel Xia

by: Jenny Mei

Look back at history — men were in the lead in almost all careers, especially politics and literature. Where was women’s place? They stayed at home, took care of babies and did housework. Even though a lot of them had abilities that exceeded their husbands’. For example, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, a brilliant poet who published multiple poems commenting on politics, appeared in our books as someone who “loves her husband dearly”. Read more 

Anandita Mishra, photographed in in Bhopal in October 2020. Photo: Anushka Sachdev

by: Anandita Mishra

Where there was no mention of “consensual sex”, but ample discussion on how to dress and behave to be perceived as a woman of “high moral character”. Where we were told to stay away from men and mobile phones. Read more 

Rima Sultana Rimu, 19, is a Bangladeshi activist living in Cox’s Bazar. Photo: UN Women/Mahmudul Karim

by: Rima Sultana Rimu

Child marriage is a curse for young women, who cannot develop their talent due to child marriage and dowry. Their dreams have been broken down. Also, they suffer from so many health consequences if they are married off at an early age. I have so many friends who are working as homemakers while still in their childhoods. I cannot cook yet, but they are cooking for their husbands’ families. If they cannot do it, they face consequences from the in-law’s family. Read more 

Dia Yonzon, 25, UNV Nepal. Photo: Courtesy of Dia Yonzon

by: Dia Yonzon

All it took, as so often, was for one person to summon the courage to open up about their life. I was sitting in a zoom call with strangers, but as they told their stories and spoke about what impacted their art, I felt like I was sitting under forest foliage somewhere listening to tales from a fantasy world. As more and more people got comfortable and started to share, it was as if a floodgate opened up of stories woven in nostalgia. Read more 

Malalai Mobariz. Photo: UN Women

by: Malalai Mobariz

When Malalai Mobariz, 30, first tried to rent a space for her café last year, she only made an oral agreement with the property owner. She went to get the key a week later, only to find that he had changed his mind and rented to someone else. Then in September, Mobariz attended UN Women’s Young Women’s Entrepreneurs Bootcamp in Mazar-e Sharif city in Balkh province. When Mobariz found another place and opened her café on 10 November, she made sure she had a signed contract with the property owner, a license for the business, and arrangements to pay taxes. Read more 

by: Soundarya Baskaran

Soundarya Baskaran, 20, lives in Venmankondan village of Tamil Nadu state in southern India and is a final-year mathematics student at Srinivasan College of Arts & Science. She is an advocate for ending menstruation stigma in India, an effort that aligns with United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 3 on good health and wellbeing, Goal 5 on gender equality and women's empowerment and Goal 6 on access to clean water and sanitation. Read more

by: Lucky

Lucky has worked as a volunteer for UN Women and other organizations, is participating in civil society groups seeking to end gender-based violence, and is promoting girls’ education in her community. In the future, she wants to be a political leader. Lucky’s story demonstrates United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 16 on promoting peaceful and inclusive societies, and Goal 5 on gender equality and women's empowerment. Read more

by: Shukria Yari

I have heard a lot of wrenching stories like a girl given away as a slave to settle a family dispute, a young woman traded to another family in exchange for a second wife for her father, a woman blamed for not giving birth to a baby boy. Read more

by: Shane Bhatla 

Twenty-five years ago, a young boy was born trapped in a body that wasn’t his. So on that one fateful day, as my bully shoved me into the wall of the library and pinned my arms there, I discovered I was gay and madly head over... Read more

by: Net Supatravanij

The idealistic vision of the world is always in stark contrast to reality. It’s easy to say, “I support this” or “I believe in that” but having the commitment and consistency to follow through with actions is a different story. Read more

 

 


The information and views expressed in UN Women web blogs by youth from Asia and the Pacific are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the views of UN Women, the United Nations, or any of its affiliated organizations.