​On Friday 9th March, a group of ten students and two teachers spent the day at London’s Southbank for the Women of the World Festival 2018.  On the weekend of International Women’s Day every year, the festival brings together women, and supporters of women, from around the world to share their experiences and learn from one another. This year, in light of #MeToo, as well as the Time’s Up and Black Lives Matter movements,  the event felt more timely and important than ever. The trip attendees, who were from different departments across College, included: Nat Cotterill, Olly Barker, Aram Marsh, Georgia Holt, Kiara Davies, Elizabeth Broughton, Scarlett McNicol, Rebecca Voysey, Rhea Norwood, Beth Butterfield, Beth Redfern and Sophia Ali-Burdon.  

The photo is of a ground breaking activist, Marieme Jamme. She is the founder of I Am the CODE and spoke at the opening of WOW 2018. Marieme explained her organisation’s aim to get 1 million women coding around the world by 2030. Marieme was one of many inspiring women from around the world we were lucky enough to hear speak. 

Other highlights included: a speed mentoring session with powerful women from a wide range of industries, a talk on overcoming shame with writer Bryony Gordon, a Q&A with China’s ‘famous five’ (including Mei Fung, writer of ’One Child’) and an illuminating discussion with the writer’s of ‘The Wonder Down Under’ (Norwegian Drs. Nina Brochmann and Ellen Stokken Dahl).  

The day was emotionally demanding, requiring resilience and willingness to listen to different viewpoints; it was also a day of learning and revelation. We left with hope for a future where women in the UK and around the world can live without fear and in freedom.

Photo credit (@CarolineClaisse Mar 9) 

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