Dear Men and Women of Reclaim Honour,
I have had the privilege of attending both your launch event at Goodwill last year, and also your Photo Campaign Showcase for Service Providers last month. Both of these events were a last minute decision for me because I was called to replace a co-worker who planned to attend but couldn't. A year ago I was completely unaware of what the Promote Honour Prevent Violence Campaign was all about, and I was afraid to ask questions because I did not want to come across as ignorant or judgmental. Last month I had similar worries as I walked into a Mosque for the first time. Being a white, Christian female I felt that maybe my voice was irrelevant and that I maybe shouldn't even be attending the event.
When we split into small groups to discuss your beautiful photos that were displayed in such a creative and moving way, I was very nervous. I started to make up reasons in my head about why I needed to leave early and head back to work. But when I found my small group and was welcomed with huge smiles from the facilitators I thought I should give it a shot. I could just listen and not participate.
But no, the facilitators made it hard to not participate because they had our group discuss how we could make it a safe space to talk, they let us ask questions and ask for clarification. So I participated, and the result of committing to the conversation had a huge impact on me. Our group agreed that the only way that we could start to break down barriers to communication between our different cultures was to form friendships and relationships. This is something that I hope I can be a part of, and I want to say thank you to your team.
THANKYOU- for including both male and female voices on your team
THANKYOU- for opening your campaign to the wider community
THANKYOU- for creating space for people like me to ask questions
THANKYOU- for advocating for equality and honour
THANKYOU- for your genuine and non-judgmental stance
I am so excited for the work that your team is doing, and I hope I can become friends with some of you lovely people someday. I am truly inspired!