Dilshad’s interest in social justice and activism was sparked when, at the age of 13, she was exposed to the poor children in her neighbourhood who were frequent victims of child abuse and torture. From that moment, she realized you’re never too young to make a difference. She started tutoring young kids who loitered while their moms worked as maids in the neighbourhood.
Later, she paid special focus on girls’ education and youth intervention programs in Karachi, Pakistan by working with social agencies and through personal advocacy.
In her book she narrates about cultural bias and challenges of growing up in a family where female victimization of her relatives was considered just as “situations” that happen. Later, after getting married and coming into a new country as an immigrant, she was constrained to redefine many aspects of her life as a participant in the acculturation process and raise her children. But it was during her summer vacations as a teenager when she felt a compelling reason to give back. Watching poverty, abuse of children and women on a daily basis made her see harsh realities such as women’s economic plight and cultural and religious subjugation, rape, honor killings she knew that although she couldn’t change the world- but that was no reason to allow the luxury of inaction.
She feels that her parents instilled a desire for excellence and education, and education not only in itself but rather as a tool for service to others. She says that her mom often quoted that if girls at a tender age are conditioned to believe that they are weak, vulnerable, and second-class human beings, they will begin to perceive themselves as caged birds: having wings but hesitant to fly. Caged in thoughts and actions and limited in capacity, they will attribute everything to fate and destiny. This was not just in theory but her mom lived her childhood and most part of her just for others. Dilshad refused to accept this notion and started working in her circle of influence to empower women and then there was no looking back.
‘I say to you, take courage and choose not to be the victim! I say to you, take steps to transform your mind, so you can transform your actions, your life, and ultimately, your destiny! I say to you, your life CAN be fulfilling, beautiful, and triumphant after tragedy! I say to you, if you want better, you CAN have better’!
The Power to Empower is Within You!
I wish that for myself, and I wish that for every woman. I hope you will be our supporter and ally in the change we all wish to see in the world.
Our Projects and Initiatives from 1992-2016 will soon be visible in a timeline online tool. In the meantime, here is a brief synopsis of our latest work.
From 2014-present our gender equality project for leadership Initiative benefited local girls in the US and girls in India. Our signature program, Youth Initiatives for Women Leadership brings major grass roots changes in education, technology, economic, health and media advocacy. Our young women and high school girls translate entrepreneurship skills into a three prong approach, fundraising, project development and impact driven philanthropy initiatives. Thus, this year our youth group provided summer scholarships to Irma Rangel Girls Academy here in the US and technology development center and virtual classroom for vocational business and communication courses in Ahmedabad(India).
There is much-needed political representation of our youth and young women and through our non-profit WWGC we hope to continue aiding women and children through education, proactive health interventions, entrepreneur and leadership skills, media advocacy and resource access using multimodal approaches. The STEM leadership and Microfinance Initiative in the South Asia were carried out in collaboration with Asia Initiatives (NY)
For more projects and Initiatives please click category of boxes to learn more – visit projects in 3 categories
From my heart to yours,
World Women Global Council
(Youth Initiative for Women Leadership)