This is by far the generation that has had the highest number of studies carried out in its name with more in the process of being carried out. The purpose: to understand this extremely diverse cohort of homosapiens to grace planet earth. The constant clashes millennials have with their predecessors – the generation X’s, both online and offline, will perhaps be the cause of World War 3! Every millennial out there can relate to that conversation with our parent’s generation about being on our phones 24/7 and doing away with face-to-face interactions day by day. Employers are challenged by youth who are able to deliver and achieve highly yet at the same time desire flexible working schedules – who would not want to work five hours a day, 11am – 4pm to be exact?
Millennials have been called attention seekers, narcissists, undisciplined and lacking commitment – and those are the good attributes. Despite their numerous indifferences, one thing seeks to unite the two generations: mentorship. We owe to our parents the trait of desiring to achieve because they have worked tooth and nail to give us comfortable lifestyles. Naturally, we want to be like them or even better. And what better way to learn and tap into their experiences and wisdom than by sitting at their feet and drawing in? Generation X willing to share, Generation Y willing to learn.
Enter the Tuwezeshe Akina Dada Programme, a partnership of Akina Mama wa Afrika, Foundation for Women’s Health Research and Development (FORWARD), and Sub-Sahara Advisory Panel (SSAP) that has ran a robust mentorship experience for young women mentored by trailblazing women on the continent! The project aims to improve the rights and amplify the actions of East African girls and young women in their fight against all forms of gender based violence and inequality. We caught up with Patricia Humura, a Tuwezeshe Fellow and mentee about her experience in the Tuwezeshe Dada Mentoring Programme. Meet Patricia!
Tell us about Patricia
Patricia Humura is a 23 year old Uganda female. I am a Human Rights defender, Feminist, and an upcoming writer. I studied ethics and Human Rights at Makerere University and I am currently working with Women and Girl Child development association where I believe I will acquire more knowledge and skills for progress. I am interested in advocating for human rights, gender equality and social justice and so ambitious and believe my unbeatable spirit will lead to better results.
What is your passion?
I love reading. I have a very strong thirst for knowledge which is inspired by the saying that “knowledge is power!” This is why I spend a lot of time reading and researching. I read two books per month.
I am passionate about information which drives me to achieve engagement on social media from where I share and gain information concerning the world where I live.
I love being healthy and maintaining a good shape which is why I engage in sports like jogging, yoga and aerobics.
I am equally passionate about charity. I believe in giving back to society especially the people who are less privileged. I must say I love children and enjoy playing with them.
What does feminist mentorship mean to you?
Feminist mentorship is where an experienced and more knowledgeable person helps to guide a less experienced or less knowledgeable person in the notion that both males and females are equal. It helps in raising the esteem of the feminine gender so that they can be transformational leaders and actively participate in the affairs of the society.
Who is your ideal mentor?
In my opinion, the ideal mentor should be a knowledgeable person who is readily available to attend the needs of the mentee’s pursuit of experience. In addition, they should be committed to their roles. They ought to go beyond to change their agenda and strive to make their mentees better people.
Tell us about the Tuwezeshe Mentorship Program
I was so delighted to join the Tuwezeshe Dada program because it has helped me become what I am now and achieve more than I ever imagined. It opened my mind to think critically, make creative choices and work on my personal and professional growth. My mentor whom I met physically and constantly chatted with online has produced good fruit in my life.
I expected to be taught about feminist leadership. I always wanted to become a feminist but because of the negative beliefs people have towards it, my dream was delayed since I believed in such information. It is now that I have found out it is transformational leadership. It aims at equality and justice. Feminism is gender sensitive.
I have acquired better communication skills for example my writing skills have improved and I can share my ideas in a better way. I am working towards being a transformational leader. I am also engaging in more sports activities to better my health.
What's your ideal mode of communication with your mentor, what would you desire?
She was far and we met a few times which forced us improvise and use online communication platforms. I desire to meet my mentor at least once a week.
What's the one thing you want to draw from this mentorship?
I want to be a fearless leader. Through this mentorship, I have become empowered and can make meaningful decisions which I believe is the right path to pinnacle leadership.
Has your level of productivity as regards women rights and empowerment increased in this mentorship?
Yes, very much. I have become an experienced feminist and I now empower girls in different ways. I speak out on issues affecting women and girls and continue to mentor young girls in my community. I teach girls and women at my organization about sexual and gender based violence and inequality. I am building a network especially in my home area where girls are encouraged to build their esteem and confidence.
On a personal level, through constant interaction with my mentor I can confidently address a meeting. I acquired communication skills which has greatly improved my blog. My self-caare schedule has changed for the better. I am also able to reflect and work on my areas of weakness and credit myself where I am better for example by constantly drawing my weekly schedules and following them.
Would you love to become a mentor one day? Why?
Yes. I am willing to share my experiences to empower and grow with a young person in their feminist and leadership journey. There are many challenges faced by young people today because of poor mentorship. I want to contribute to someone’s life through mentoring.
That’s Patricia for you! A rising young feminist, a force to reckon with. Mentoring is undeniably a core part of leadership. In order to raise-up a generation of capable young women leaders, there is need to ensure they have solid foundations. Through mentorship, women and girls are equipped with the skills, confidence and power to both transform and navigate their lives and communities.
A woman with a strong sense of personal power, is self-confident enough to accurately identify her strengths as well as her blind spots, which she is continually working to improve.”
Compiled by Pauline Kahuubire