Womentalk: An online portal for inspiring women
Today turned out to be an extremely hot and humid afternoon. With temperatures soaring and beads of sweat pouring off my skin, I attended the launch of Womentalk.
Womentalk is a social enterprise that aims to use the power of online media to champion and celebrate the social empowerment of Asian women. Conceptualized and founded by Eunice Olsen (winner of the 2000 Miss Singapore Universe), Womentalk is part of her self-started company called House of Ou Studios. It is also her first foray into social entrepreneurship.
Eunice is no stranger to social activism. She has fronted many social causes for people with disabilities, youths at risk, the environment and various women-related issues. And social empowerment of Asian women is on the rise.
The idea for a women empowerment portal was planted in Eunice’s mind in 2011. Eunice hosted a show where she met an obese woman who said her husband was so embarrassed by her weight that he refused to take her out. It was only when she had lost the weight that her husband started to take her out to be seen in public. This revelation stunned Eunice. How a smart, well-articulate and determined woman could remain powerless in the hands of her husband. Thus, the seed began to sow. And Womentalk was created.
Serving as is platform to bring these women and their inspiring stories to light (as they are not ‘google-able‘), Womentalk showcases stories of ordinary women who live extraordinary lives; despite societal expectations and cultural oppression in Asian.
The selected group of women and their stories are individually featured in 3 to 7-minute lifestyle interview-format videos. Every episode is created to get the viewer an insight to each woman’s struggles and achievements, tug at the heart strings and move towards some kind of action – mostly in the form of donation to support the woman’s chosen charitable organization.
|A couple of the women featured in the launch video. Haslinah Yacob (far left) and Yip Pin Xiu (far right)|
One such woman is Haslinah Yacob.
Story of Haslinah
Haslinah Yacob was a rape victim at the tender age of 18 by a stranger she met at a bus-stop. At the time of the rape, the perpetrator was never caught. She eventually choose to carry on with life leaving this incident behind her.
Over the years, she got married and became a proud mother of three. With time, two of her three children also became victims of sexual misconduct. Not wanting to accept this as her and her family’s fate, Haslinah founded Women for Equality Association (WEA) in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia; for women who are victims of rape and abuse. WEA provides these women with shelter and protection and offers spiritual guidance, education and life-skill training. All done in the hopes to get these women back on their feet again.
|Haslinah receiving a token of appreciation from Eunice Olsen|
Grab a tissue. Watching Haslinah’s interview could bring you to tears. But, more importantly, grab your wallet and draw out your credit card.
The hope for Womentalk is that interviews (such as this) will get the viewing public to do more than cry about it.
Starting from today’s launch, there will be 8 featured interviews per season and three seasons per a year. That equals to 24 feature episodes every 12 months. So, if you are looking for a source of inspiration and a site what celebrates womanhood, stay tuned on Womentalk.
To find out more on Womentalk, watch their inspiring videos or how you can make a difference, click here.