Inspired by the determination of Nobel Peace Prize nominee Malayla Yousafzai of Pakistan — the young woman who was shot in an assassination attempt by the Taliban in the fall of 2012 because of her educational pursuits and educational activism — “Share Her Story” is a student-initiated awareness campaign created to shed light on the problems women face in cultures that impose social, cultural, educational, economic and political barriers on women, especially in developing countries. The campaign, in turn, tries to help promote a positive position for women by spreading the stories of individuals who face especially difficult challenges in a host of countries through an intimately formatted, statistically supported brochure series and web site.
Title: Share Her Story Campaign
Designer: Sarah Faulkner
Faculty Advisor: Julie Mader-Meersman
The project is conscientious of resources through the scale specifications of the brochures. They are systemized into a compact format that both enhances the intimacy of the subject and at the same time maximizes the challenge of telling a wide range of stories efficiently. Further, a web component helps maximize the distribution of information globally without consuming an abundance of natural resources such as paper and ink.
This project puts the very personal stories of real individuals directly in front of people to make an emotional connection with them about the subject. To those in western society, problems in developing countries can often feel out of reach, less urgent, and disconnected because they’re so far away. By making it personal, with specific women’s stories and compelling statistics, it’s harder to ignore. It also provides information about ways to help through links on the campaign web site.
Long-term, this project can help to create financial security for women in the countries highlighted in the brochure series and web site by gaining support for advances in policies and non-profit international efforts for women. The hope is that opportunities would be expanded for women and more equity would be created for women.
Given the deep and widespread cultural barriers in the countries of the women spotlighted, the hope of this campaign would be to offer information, and put people in touch with existing organizations that are focused on supporting advances in the equity and fair treatment of women and girls. It uses specific, personal, individual stories to touch people and inspire action.
From my research in the early stages of this project, I discovered the story of a young girl in Pakistan, Maylayla. The article discussed her everyday struggles with life in Pakistan as a woman. This story of hardship brought me to many other stories of women struggling to survive in other countries where they are not valued as members of society. These women, and many other organizations, are calling for help on a global scale to give aid to women in low development countries. I wanted to give them a platform to collectively ask for aid through informative storytelling. By sharing stories and facts of many women’s lives to a broad audience, it allows the reader to connect and understand their life. I chose a pamphlet that folds in a book like fashion to tell the story of a particular woman’s life. Through imagery, text, and info graphics, the reader gets an idea of the daily struggles of women in different countries. Once the reader has completed the story and factual information offered for that particular woman, there is a perforated piece for them to share with others, to raise awareness and answer the call to help these women in need.