Kathmandu, May 31, 2017: The fourth session of EmpowHER set off last Saturday with a presentation from each group on an excerpt from Sheryl Sandberg’s book, ‘Lean In’. The total of 18 cohort members were divided into four groups, made to discuss about it in the respective groups. All the girls not only understood the excerpt well but could also draw from their personal experiences regarding their versions of the second chapter in the book ‘Sit at the table’. It was very refreshing. Also, many girls resonated that perhaps it’s not always the patriarchy that holds women back but the internal conditioning of women that makes them underestimate themselves.
The session was followed by a discussion on the process of communication. It showed how communication is dependent on not just on two people- the sender and the receiver, but also by their biases and how they construct the data they want to communicate.
The session then continued with tips from the facilitator regarding how to pitch for the impact project (at the graduation day). “Since time is a crucial part of pitching and is very limited, one should be able to say the most in the least amount of time,” shared the facilitator on the occasion. The Power of 3 then came into play. It showed the participants on how we can eloquently and effectively say what we want to say, and the audience also knows what we want them to know. It also focused on the importance of having a theme and focusing on that while pitching our idea.
The girls were then given a topic each to pitch in front of everyone. Everyone did their best with the time they were provided. It made the girls realize about the things we should work on when we would be pitching for our actual project.
Then came the highlight of the session. It was a meeting with Ram K Rijal, an MIT graduate as well as the founder of Bloom Nepal School. It was as surreal as meeting a celebrity and yet it was refreshing to find him so calm and so humble. He began with his modest beginnings, the challenges he faced and how he overcame all these and reached the present position. The gist of everything he said was to follow a passion though there will be obstacles, both anticipated and unanticipated, but not be disheartened or discouraged by them and keep pursuing what one aimed for.
The last part of the session was on ‘Time Management’. We all have 24 hours a day, but how with prioritization, strategic planning we can achieve the best of it? It also discussed how we need to categorize and sub-categorize our time and work as personal and professional, productive and not-so-productive, urgent, not urgent, important and not important. The session ended with a demonstration of Pickle jar theory. It was the ideal example to show us how with appropriate prioritization, everything comes into place and how horribly wrong a situation can go if done otherwise.
The session was one of the most productive sessions of EmpowHER so far. The Energizer and the games in between the discussions were very entertaining and conducive to learning as well.
By Nancy Sherpa, Pabitra Majhi, and Swosti Shrestha
Over the course of four months, the EmpowHER cohorts will go through various activities related to leadership development, and get involved with the community. Glocal Khabar, as the official online media partner, will bring out regular updates about the programme throughout the project duration.