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‘Aspire to become women who inspire’

/ 12:04 AM March 11, 2014

“Juana, Ang Tatag mo ay Tatag Natin sa Pagbangon at Pagsulong.” This is the theme of this year’s Women’s Month celebration. The moment I read the theme, the first thing that popped in my mind was leadership. Following the natural disasters and the economic and political challenges we had to contend with last year, the Philippine Commission on Women encourages women not only to take part but also to take a lead in moving our nation forward to progress.

However, this doesn’t mean that we have to be the president of the country to make a change in our lives and the lives of others. Not even to be a mayor, congressman or governor; of course, being in any of those public offices will be an edge if we choose to play an active role in strengthening our government. But as students, we need to empower ourselves with the ability to manage our own personal affairs and to live independent lives. We cannot dream of becoming future leaders if we depend on our partners. We can never be the head of office someday if we are not focused on and committed to our studies now.

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Meanwhile, we have to be knowledgeable about Republic Act No. 9710 or the Magna Carta for Women, which covers social protection against discrimination in the sociocultural context. We should never allow violence against women nor continue the mistakes of battered wives. They surely don’t want us to go through the pain and agony they have experienced. Because no matter how your partner loves you, it doesn’t mean that he won’t make you cry. It will always be an advantage if we know our rights.

Young women should never “attach” themselves to their boyfriends. There are so many more things ahead of us. Romantic relationship should not be the priority. Instead, we should study and establish our career; if it has to be fame, then so be it. If we want to gain respect from other people, we should respect ourselves first—starting from the clothes we wear, words we utter and the people we choose to be with.

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Don’t we dream to be successful someday? Then let’s keep to the path our parents aspired for us. Depending on other people, especially on partners, should never be an option in our quest for a prosperous life. We must empower ourselves every day by going after a daily achievement. Thus we shall learn to appreciate our life not only as human beings who will bear children someday; we should aspire to become women who motivate and inspire other people to lead successful lives.

—ADRIENNE SALVI B. BAYANGAN,

[email protected]

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