6/23 – This Week In Women: Strength in Numbers

6/23 – This Week In Women:

Strength in Numbers

Cover photo courtesy of Slate

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This week, the success of UK’s Women’s Sport Week, Angelina Jolie’s visit to Kenya, and females fighting extreme terrorism in Syria, combine to represent the strength and impact women have when they come together.

Karen Handel wins Georgia in the most expensive House race in history

Georgia’s open, high-profile House seat was filled on Tuesday after Republican Karen Handel won over Democrat Jon Ossoff by 3.8 percentage points. Handel’s win made history in two ways – locally, as she is the first female Republican representative for Georgia, and nationally, with her win increasing the number of females in Congress to its highest number: 105. 

In her acceptance address, Handel noted the difficulty of this race, as well as the national attention it received, referring to it as a “very, very tight race” that required “all hands on deck.” She continued, assuring that, “Tomorrow the real work will begin – the hard work of governing and doing that in a civil, responsible way.”

Angelina Jolie celebrates World Refugee Day with Kenyan refugee girls

Tuesday marked World Refugee Day in Nairobi Kenya. To recognize this as an U.N. Refugee agency special envoy, Angelina Jolie spent time in a safe house with girls who escaped violence from various parts of the country. UNHCR released that these girls were from the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan, Somalia, Burundi and Rwanda, and had experienced gender-based sexual violence. Jolie addressed the fact that many of the times this violence is performed by “someone in uniform who has taken an oath to protect.” In order to raise awareness and start to decrease violence, she continued, “So it is a responsibility of those who wear uniform to take the lead now by correcting from within, setting an example and stepping forward with new commitments.”

Hanna Böhman is creating a female force to fight ISIS

The former model first made headlines when she survived a nearly fatal motorcycle accident and went straight to Syria, claiming she wanted to have a greater life’s purpose. This week Fox News reported that, at 48 years old, Hanna Böhman is still part of the female fight to eradicate extremist group ISIS in Syria. “We’re being the change we want to see in the world,” she says. “It sounds cliche, but it’s true.” She first joined the female brigade of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPJ) in 2015, where she participated in a four-hour training session on how to use an AK-47 before beginning to fight alongside other women. The Canadian spent two tours with the YPJ but no longer serves with them, going out on her own in Iraq and Syria, acknowledging that physically, ISIS is “on their way out” in Syria. However, the online battle is one that continues to be difficult.

Hanna Bohman. Photo courtesy of Fox News
Beyoncé has yet to release the name of her newborns, and the Internet isn’t happy

On the cusp of making this week and last week’s news, it was announced that Beyoncé gave birth to her twins. Yet the notorious, in-the-spotlight popstar has yet to reveal the gender, or names of the newly-welcomed babes, and the Internet is not having it. Between guessing the twins’ names, to reacting on these rumored names, and even debating the genders, Twitter has been a frenzy of trending Bey-based memes and hashtags. 

Knowles is keeping her fans on the edge of their seats, which stands in stark contrast to Blue Ivy’s welcome in 2012, when she released the official news only two days after her birth. Whether you’re a Beyonce follower or not, the buzz is seemingly unavoidable, with fans now hoping the rumored-to-be premature babies are doing well.

The Muslim Women’s Network as Stars of Women’s Sports Week

As part of UK’s Women’s Sport Week which ran this week, the Women’s Cricket Rugby World Cup was a main focus, and of that focus, Muslim women are encouraging their peers to partake in sports recognized as pioneers. Dana Abdulkarim, Salma Bi and Amna Rafiq are among the trustees, athletes and influencers who are making it their mission to challenge stereotypes about Muslim women playing sports. Abdulkarim was the first hijabi athlete to represent England in a sport, going on to become Britain’s first hijabi physical education instructor. She is known for changing the rules around wearing a headscarf for rounders. Bi comes from a long line of cricket genes, and is the first woman from the Islamic faith to be selected for the Worcestershire team. Rafiq has dedicated her time to changing the infrastructure for women in sports, and also comes from a cricket family. These women are three of the many from the network who continue to dedicate and make strides for Muslim women overseas.

Salma Bi. Photo courtesy of BBC
Jillian Dara

Jillian grew up an island girl but converted to city style after living in Boston, London, Santiago, and now, NYC. She is a writer, editor and content creator with a desire to share stories in the lifestyle genre. With a particular focus on travel and profiles, she prides herself on sharing the most authentic story for those who aren’t able to share their own.

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