Anya Thakur: “Seeing my work resonate with, impact others and have the power to enact change is incredibly gratifying and perennially reminds me of the importance of sharing my voice in a vast landscape.”
As Khalil Gibran said, “Beauty is not in the face; beauty is a light in the heart.”
Through my work with UN Women and when shooting for Victoria’s Secret Holiday, it’s immensely important to me that women and girls feel comfortable and confident in their natural selves and in sharing their voices. As I shot with VS Pink, I wanted to remember the range of issues that impact women.
That extends to their health and bodies and through ShePower, a global movement and organization I founded aiming to advocate and uplift women and girls, I was motivated to disseminate health and hygiene products and over five thousand sanitary pads to underserved communities and to women and girls in need in Dallas, Vancouver Ontario and many parts of India. Faced with homelessness and other challenges, women are unable to afford these products and often resort to using abrasive materials such as newspaper or paper bags which can cause abrasions or infections. Funded by United Nations foundations and the Jane Goodall Foundation and donations from outreach efforts I led, I connected with and was able to empower or uplift women and girls in their time of need. By allowing them to focus on their education, careers and maximizing their potential, they can in turn contribute to their families, communities and achieve their personal goals. By empowering women, we are empowering communities, whether mine in Dallas or globally as I continue to do in Canada and India.
Seeing my work resonate with, impact others and have the power to enact change is incredibly gratifying and perennially reminds me of the importance of sharing my voice in a vast landscape.
I was recently reached out to by Celine Foster, the Vice President of Marketing for Stanford Women in Business and this year’s Stanford University sophomore class president, for my experience in journalism as she sought advice and expertise on starting an interview series at her school.
I was honored at her praise of my “amazing journalism experience” and told her the importance of pursuing her passions and starting out. And my words are something that I would share with everyone, from the young girls in India who I worked with to my younger self. Our voices are powerful and we should not wait to change the world. And education is education and that is essential to empowerment, whether for the wide-eyed girls in India who nurtured and ignited the tender sparks within themselves once we gave them the matchsticks to make a flame to the interview series that shapes up as I write this. Both burn and flare with potential and possibility from the inside. It’s up to us to allow women and girls everywhere to realize this potential.
Instagram: Anya Thakur @anyaathakur