She is changing the world for women and girls through her work with Irise International.
Amelia Savell-Boss is the National Coordinator of our student network, Friends of Irise UK. She has been volunteering for Irise since 2013 and in 2014 founded her very own Friends of Irise branch at Birmingham University.
Not only has she helped raise hundreds of pounds to support Irise’s work she also volunteered with our Uganda Team last year and helped us collect important research data to give marginalised girls a voice and prove to the world that menstruation matters.
We spoke to Amelia about what inspires her to create a better world for women and girls on the other side of the planet and she shared with us how her foster sisters taught her about global sisterhood.
“I have two sisters from my mom and dad and a couple of fostered sisters who are of different origins. I grew up with a mom and dad who supported and encouraged me to do what I like. Some of my sisters had their children very young and had no support with absentee or unsupportive fathers. Some of my sisters have witnessed serious war crimes, two of my sisters are survivors of the 1994 Rwandan genocide. The difference between my life and my sisters’ lives shows the impacts of social injustices against women.”
Amelia believes that with education and privilege comes the responsibility to extend those benefits to others.
“I have to recognize the privilege I was born with. In recognition of that privilege, I want to help others progress, develop and achieve. I’m lucky to have been given the opportunity to have a high level of education at a brilliant University and that isn’t the reality for so many girls in the world. I just think what a better place the world would be if all those women and girls were given the gift of education.”
Amelia is so passionate about supporting Irise because she sees their work as part of the global agenda to promote and achieve gender equality.
“I believe that we do live in a patriarchal society that stigmatizes women and female health issues and prohibits women from achieving what we’re capable of and fulfilling our potential. Should women be given the platform to achieve, we could achieve everything men have.”
It’s the passion and commitment of young women like Amelia that will transform the lives of the next generation of girls. Even better it's infectious. Susan, a young woman trained by Irise in Uganda commented, “We are ready to go and deliver these services to our young sisters” and one of those young sisters, Jane, said “I like the way [you taught that] girls are useful to the world.” Without Irise supporters like Amelia, Susan would not have been inspired to go out and pass on her own inspiration to girls like Jane in her community. The most exciting thing about empowerment is that it’s a chain reaction. All it takes is a spark like Amelia to set alight a contagious passion for women’s rights that will change the world.
You can join Amelia, Susan, Jane and the whole Irise Team today!
The content of this blog may contain personal views which are not the views of Irise International unless specifically stated. This blog is part of a series of blogs used to promote awareness of menstrual hygiene and gender equality.