Shiela Sani is an inspirational young leader fighting violence against women and children, aiming to restore dignity in the lives of people who have been affected by domestic violence and sexual abuse. She speaks against child marriage and continues fighting to bring back the future to those that it was forcefully taken away from them.
She is a fearless woman from Nigeria, an author, a writer, and a community developer who seeks to reach out to women across Africa both in the rural and urban areas to see how she can impact their lives through empowerment programs.
She founded the Women of Golden Initiative in 2018, intending to reach out to women who are affected by domestic violence, create programs that will empower the victims, and teach communities about social responsibilities.
Her journey started when she was part of a round table conversation with women who gathered together to share thoughts and experiences about domestic violence and sexual abuse, particularly those that were sexually abused at school by their lecturers. However, the group grew apart after some time. But, the desire to continue helping and educating people about domestic violence was still like a fire burning inside her golden heart.
She later decided to visit an orphanage to spread awareness about domestic violence against women and children. Shockingly she discovered several cases of sexual abuse, extortion, victimization, and domestic violence.
After discovering all the cases at the orphanage, she decided to reach out to more women to help educate people about domestic violence and also create more women empowerment program.
She created a platform where women affected by domestic violence or who have a traumatic experience can connect to her online or write to her to request therapy sessions or any assistance.
“I advocate against child marriage. There are several kids that I have managed to restore from child marriage and ensured the return to school.” She said.
Her biggest challenge is security because sometimes she has to go to unfavorable places to meet up with victims; whilst some sees her as a threat.
“I sometimes receiving requests to also provide therapy sessions to men because there are also experiencing domestic abuse”. She said.
She indicated that men also experience domestic violence and sexual abuse. She further explained that it is unfortunate that Africa sees a man who cries as weak but a woman who cries is a sign of strength. This stigma must stop and men must not be afraid to seek help.
Her advice to people going through domestic violence or sexual abuse, is to firstly pray for God to help you overcome the situation and try to reach out to law enforcement, a social worker, or a close relative.
“We say NO to abuse against women and children “.
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