WOW | What You Think

Creating a gender just society

Compiled by: Pabita Dahal
wow photo file © Ram Tandukar/ Gokul Shrees

Rita Shrestha
Humanitarian

I have seen amazing changes in the role of women here in Kathmandu, even just in my lifetime. When I was growing up, women were expected to stay at home. It was not seen as acceptable to pursue a career and work outside. Today, it fills me with joy to see women following their dreams along with managing their families. It is heartwarming to see how families and our society are encouraging young girls of the country to invest in their future and thus the future of our nation. Everyone has played a role in creating a gender just society providing platforms to women, and women are appreciating all the support and taking the opportunities successfully.   

It has been a difficult journey for women, not just in Nepal but all around the world. Nepal has deep-rooted religious and cultural beliefs that have shaped our society and given the country a unique identity in the world. However, at times, these same beliefs have also limited women’s progress. Yet every day, I see countless stories of inspiring women who are challenging the norms. Women, like the amazing nominees for the Hyatt WOW Women Achievers Award, who are blazing their own paths across different sectors – from arts and politics to entrepreneurship and social activism are great examples. Women are breaking through stigma and obstacles to evolve into individuals and societies that we can all be proud of.

My parents empowered me with the gift of education.  They encouraged me to pursue my dreams and filled my life with love. I have been touched by many other wonderful souls who have instilled in me the idea that Nepali women are powerful, graceful, humble and nurturing. My family taught me at an early age that investing in education for young girls is the key to progress. Thus, for me, the very first and prominent thing that helps women to be empowered is education.