Seeking to make my six months in Malta an experience of intrigue and intention, I searched for change-makers on this island. And I found them.
With a call to harmonize the worlds of migrant women and those important to them with the freedoms of their new communities, Migrant Women Association Malta has been molding opportunities, creating powerful moments, and permeating Maltese society with the selfless ambitions of Founder Umayma Elamin since 2015.
My pleasures of lending my hands to their work multiply with every new task and every new insight. As the excitement of March 8’s International Women’s Day warmed the globe, Migrant Women Association Malta also contributed to the enthusiasm, dialogue, and advancements for our world’s women.
Below you can find an article that I penned for Migrant Women Association Malta that gives the highlights of the organization’s research, work, and celebrations:
As evidenced by the hard and humble work of the minds, talents, and forces of this organization, indeed,
every day is Women’s Day.
MIGRANT WOMEN ASSOCIATION OF MALTA – CELEBRATION OF WOMEN 2018
Women across the globe continue to show the world that their journeys, achievements, and strength are worth recognition. On March 12, Migrant Women Association of Malta (MWAM) continued the celebration of International Women’s Day by hosting their own special event in St. Julian’s, Malta, at the Gaming Innovation Group (GIG) Center. Migrant Women Association of Malta would like to send a very special thank you to Farah Fawzi and the Gaming Innovation Group (GIG) for the support given in the framework of their newly launched initiative, GIG Gives.
Inside a beautiful high-rise on one of the most beloved bays in Malta, friends, family, and strangers illuminated the space with their happy spirits ready for celebration. Various embassies, agencies, and NGOs from across the island including UNHCR, People for Change Foundation, the U.S. Embassy, and SOS Malta, among others, were also represented in the space with enthusiasm for another common cause. Entrance into the event was a thrilling scene as over ninety lively faces filled the room as they gathered to celebrate the vitality of migrant women across the country. After a warm welcome by MWAM’s inspiring founder Umayma Elamin, the evening of excitement, education, and encouragement began.
Not only did the festivities include the warmth of community, the night also provided the valuable opportunity to discuss some of the concerns that migrant women face and MWAM’s role in actively addressing them. A leading topic of concern is that of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV), and the research of MWAM representatives highlighted some of the statistics and complexities associated with this issue. The team of three, Anna Sangare, Maria Jones, and Diana Tudorancea, detailed how sexual and gender-based violence affects communities in Europe, and specifically Malta (read the full report here). As the Project Administrator, Project Coordinator, and Mental Health Officer (respectively) of a new initiative by MWAM, these women also articulated the importance of undertaking this issue with nuance and care. Though this particular reality remains a heavy matter for many women, leading the bold path to resolutions to this problem begins with extended education on the subject as well as collaboration between the people, organizations, and communities.
As adequate mental health assistance is an issue that faces many people in the world, the migrant women communities here in Malta are unfortunately no exception. However, MWAM’s new Better Future Project was detailed in another presentation by Maria Jones and Diana Tudorancea and provided the start of the solution to the scarce mental health access for migrant women in Malta, especially those who have experience sexual and gender-based violence. As an essential though often overlooked aspect of combatting sexual and gender-based violence, providing quality mental health assistance for survivors is the newest venture that MWAM is beginning to bring a better future to incredible women in Malta’s migrant communities.
Progressing to a more intimate and uplifting element of the evening, the “Human Library” began with one task—to dream up the best book title for a stranger’s story. Scattered around the room were brave individuals who relayed their experiences, hardships, and optimism to small groups, while the groups collaborated to duly title their narratives. Though this library consisted of only four books, the wealth of experience and inspiration found within each of the stories’ pages left their marks on that night and beyond.
As the festivities over the bay came to a close, connections were established and thoughtful minds were inspired with a celebration of the courage and essence of women. Thanks to the hard work of volunteers and interns, the Migrant Women Association of Malta’s uplifting event ensured that the celebration of women can continue beyond the confines of one room and one night.
Finally, I want to thank you from my core.
For your support. For your subscriptions. For your eyes. For your attention.
I am always driven to provide inspiration of all types– travel, knowledge, freedom, etc.
However, in this particular post, I hope that you gain beyond what you are looking for, and that you go beneath the layers to find it.
Enjoy the article. Stay Curious.