On Friday, October 7, the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to three women: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Leymah Gbowee of Liberia and Tawakul Karman of Yemen for ‘their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work.’
It is so exciting to have these women and their efforts recognized for the world to see.
Tawakul Karman is a Yemeni journalist and activist who was deeply involved with the uprisings against the government and seeking independence for her people. She even received death threats for her activism ranging from sit-ins, street protests and more. Karman is not only an incredible activist, but also as a woman, a great role model.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is the president of Liberia and is credited for helping her country’s debt and investigating war crimes. She has worked tirelessly to empower women, educate the people and tackle corruption in all areas.
Leymah Gbowee is a Liberian peace activist who led a women’s campaign for the end of Liberia’s civil war and helped the peace treaty, the Accra Accords, get signed when “in 2003 when she led hundreds of women to Monrovia’s City Hall, demanding an end to the war.”
The Nobel Peace Prize may be symbolic and perhaps controversial, so it may not have a big impact on the majority of people, however I think the fact that it still exists is important. Peace, democracy and gender equality through nonviolence are three incredibly difficult but crucial components of a stable society and I hope more people are motivated and encouraged to emulate these women and support their ideas for change.