I’ve never been to a conference of this size and nature, so I don’t know what to expect. As you might imagine, this has affected my packing. What clothes am I to bring along? What kind of shoes? I know I need a wide brimmed hat and sunglasses for sure, because Vancouver is hot, but other than that? However, as my people say: at all at all, na im bad pass. So, I’ll be winging it at the Women Deliver conference, and I hope you’ll follow my shenanigans on Twitter, Instagram and maybe Facebook (If IK will agree to help me navigate that platform).
Hold on, I’m missing out on something here… what is the Women Deliver Conference you ask? Well, for those of you who didn’t exit this post and run off to Google, I’ll explain what it is. The Women Deliver Conference is really what the name says it is. A conference where thousands of women gather across the world to discuss women’s issues. But it’s more than just women yapping about their problems – we’ve been doing that for years and nobody listens to us anyway. Officially described as “the world’s largest conference on gender equality and the health, rights, and wellbeing of girls and women,” the conference is a forum where participants will learn from other women across the globe on issues that affect them. It’s kind of a melting pot of ideas synergized in one spot. So, you come, you learn, and then you go back and influence your community.
There will be panel discussions, plenary sessions, workshops and so many amazing opportunities to network. You see, there’s a tendency to view the world through the lens of your own bubble, and what a conference like this does is to help you widen that lens. It provides you with information on how to go forth and make impactful change within your community. I mean: it is the a gathering of “the greatest minds, strongest activists, and most progressive leaders from across the globe”; you can’t expect anything less!
The Women Deliver Conference is a a week-long event (3rd – 6th of June 2019) and there are a long list of speakers who will be sharing their knowledge and experiences with delegates. You can check them out HERE.
I’m particularly looking forward to listening to a few people: Hauwa – a Boko Haram survivor and winner of the 2018 Too Young to Wed: Girls’ Champion Award; Tarana Burke – founder of the #MeToo movement; Kate Gilmore – UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights; Humphrey Nabimanya – founder of Reach A Hand Uganda; Michael Kaufman – co-founder of the White Ribbon Campaign, and, of course DJ Switch – the 11 year old dynamo of talent from Ghana.
There are also a few pre-conference events that have been described as highly interactive. These predominantly by-invitation-only events will provide participants with many opportunities to exchange best practices and coordinate world-changing initiatives. I’ll be attending the pre-conference: Uniting Forces to Ensure Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) is a Practice of the Past. I’m really looking forward to this event, because there’s so much work to be done for women in our communities, and I want to learn how to be more intentional and effective in my advocacy.
That being said, I hope you’ll follow me on Twitter (@atoke_) or just follow BellaNaija (@bellanaija) as I’ll be sharing my Vancouver stories on there. If you want visuals from the conference, please follow @bellanaijaonline on Instagram via the hashtag #BNxWomenDeliver2019. I’ll share videos from the sessions there as well.
Alternatively, you can join the four-day conference online HERE.
Okay, let me go and continue packing – dresses or jeans and t-shirt?