You’re the author.

By: Benigne Mugwaneza

August 23, 2016

This month is my third month working as a Trainer at Resonate and every time I talk to women and girls that we train for follow-up, I keep being blown away by what women are capable of achieving. They create changes for themselves, their families and their communities once they are helped to have a sense of self-confidence in their abilities and given some tools for leadership and decision-making.

At Resonate, we envision a world where women are leaders in creating communities where all people are respected and valued; Evaste is a good example of that. A month after receiving our Storytelling for Leadership training we visited Evaste and were impressed by how she had started rewriting her own story and becoming a leader in her community.

After the training, Evaste was confident enough to run for and got elected to her village council as “Friend to the Community.” In her new role she is in charge of helping tackle problems that married couples face in her village. She shared, “Recently I was able to help a couple that was about to divorce due to misunderstanding in their married life, I used my story to unite them and fortunately, they did not divorce.”

Evaste’s story is just one example of what leadership can look like for the women we train. Through our Storytelling for Leadership program, participants reflect on their lives and define who they are, what they value, and their visions for the future. Alice participated in our training two months ago. She used to be very shy and couldn’t express herself because she didn’t have conviction in her opinions. She told us that everything changed when she shared her story in front of 150 participants in Resonate’s training. Hearing other participants in the training saying that they have learnt lessons from her story has inspired her to start expressing her thoughts freely.

After the training Alice managed to get an internship opportunity. She stated, “After Resonate’s workshop, I found in me the courage to ask for an interview appointment because I was confident that I can actually do it.” For Alice, telling her story has helped her to reflect on her personal values and has been a motivation for her. “I have found the power in my own story and it has boosted my dedication to work hard and achieve my dreams.”

We are very proud of what our participants are able to achieve in their lives and for their communities and the most exciting thing is that most of them never want to keep the skills learnt for themselves, they have the will to share with other women and girls in their community.

Sharon was among our latest trainees and a few days after the training she emailed to us saying “I can imagine all girls in Rwanda being able to tell their story confidently which means we will be able to change our stories or improve them because everyone is the author of his or her own story. I hope to share the skills learnt from your workshop with other girls everywhere I will reach”

Listening to successful stories from our past participants is what keeps us moving forward and this is just the beginning. Work with us and helps us make the world a better place by reaching more women and girls like Evaste, Alice and Sharon who will certainly give back to their communities.

Megan Madeira