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Denise

I’m a church steward at CSMC and have lost track of how long I’ve been one!

Can you share a story about a woman who you admire or has had a significant impact on your life?

Where I grew up in village church, there was a lovely lady named Edna. She was always a surrogate “aunt” who was a very strong, determined women and was happy to express her opinion. I grew up always knowing her thoughts and opinion, but she always included me; my age didn’t stop me being included. She was a church elder and didn’t see why younger girls couldn’t be a part of what was going on. She encouraged me to do worship leading and she was such a wonderful lady.

One thing I’ll always remember was at bible study one day where she turned to the group and said “I like Peter best of all of all the disciples – cause he constantly got it wrong. Just like me”. And I had no idea she ever felt like she got things wrong cause in my eyes she always done things right. 

It was so lovely growing up knowing it was okay to get things wrong.

What are you proud of in your life?

Getting three children to adulthood. Building them up to be independent and strong despite disabilities and seeing them rise up above it.

What initiatives or changes do you believe are needed for promoting gender equality in the world?

For me one of the biggest things to promote gender equality and equity is to remove period poverty. In a western world, like the UK, no child should ever face the problem of thinking “I cant go to school today because I can’t afford sanitary products”. 

More globally: eradicating period poverty should mean no women should have to go without regardless of who they are. 

What advice would you give to young women today?

Be yourself. Never try to be a man. There’s enough men in the world already. The world needs women (or variations thereof) to speak up and be themselves.