Khadija Gbla is a spirited, inspiring African Australian human rights activist who champions women across a diverse range of ages and minority groups at home and abroad. She is known for her advocacy on a range of injustices that impact women, including racism and female genital mutilation. She works tirelessly through her advocacy work to protect women against this type of abuse, and empower those who have survived it.
Rosie Batty lost her son in 2014, when he was murdered by his own father. Ever since, she has valiantly campaigned against domestic family violence, which also resulted in a 13-month enquiry commissioned by the Victorian government. She continues to drive the national conversation to help protect women and children from domestic violence and raise awareness about coercive control.
As a survivor of sexual abuse, Grace Tame’s story is nothing short of inspiring. As 2021 Australian of the Year, she has used her voice as a force for good, calling for changes to our laws on consent and a standard national definition. In the May issue of marie claire, she said: “We’re all getting very stirred up at the moment. We see these surges and then they die down. What we need to do is sustain a more manageable, reasonable momentum that’s not so overblown, it’s just measured.”
As the founder of Australian natural skincare + personal care brand Lovekins, Amanda Essery is a 6th generation Australian Chinese entrepreneur and true woman of action. Her brand was founded on a deep interest and passion for providing women and their children with products they can trust and supporting local Australian producers and farmers. Lovekins started from humble beginnings, Amanda started making the range from scratch for her own children, Ethan and Heidi in the kitchen of her modest apartment more than 9 years ago, calling upon her knowledge of native Australian plants that was instilled in her while growing up surrounded by the indigenous community in her hometown of Darwin.
Lovekins is a socially-driven enterprise that’s range now includes sanitary items made using Australian Cotton, and has most recently partnered with Share the Dignity to become a Champion of Change business, raising money and helping to contribute to their quest to end period poverty and the shame and stigma associated with having a period.
As the first female Prime Minister of Australia, Julia Gillard broke (actually, shattered!) many proverbial glass ceilings, however one particular moment from her political career remains top of mind; what is known as her misogyny speech. It has become one of the most unforgettable moments in parliament, as she stood up for women with conviction and courage.
She later said: "I think even people who may not remember me as a good PM, I think for whoever the next woman is, there will be a bit of a pause, breathe, whatever else this female Prime Minister does, we don't want it to be like that for her again."
Investigative journalist Jess Hill has been covering domestic abuse for more than six years, and her recent book, See What You Made Me Do has been recently released as a documentary series on SBS. Hill’s rigorous reporting and research into domestic abuse has engaged people from around the world, in particular Australia, the USA and UK, and shone a much-needed light on women who are suffering – often in silence - from coercive control and physical abuse.
According to a recent report, as many as 1 in 6 women have experienced at least 1 sexual assault since the age of 15. Since former political staffer Brittany Higgins first spoke publicly in February 2021, she has advocated tirelessly for women who have been victims of sexual abuse. As a result of her ongoing advocacy, Higgins’ rape allegation remains on the political and news agenda.
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