Women Of Will exists to tell true stories of change, curiosity and courage. Stories created and told by some pretty incredible people who decided to make an impact with their lives. From volunteering in a refugee camp, to setting up a sustainable catering company, the stories show how it’s possible to build social, environmental, cultural or political impact into everyday, normal life.
The women who feature in these stories would tell you that they are really ordinary and whatever they did, you can also do. And they’re right. I’ve set up the site because I kept meeting people who had done really cool things with their time, which were not exactly in keeping with the standard work-eat-sleep-repeat existence that we tend to get locked into. I’d find myself feeling intrigued by their ideas and actions, and motivated to follow their lead. I’d excitedly share anecdotes from these stories with friends and, more often than not, I’d see eyes light up with fascination. I realised that so many of us crave a bit of inspiration that comes from hearing about the achievements of ordinary women who we can relate to. So I wanted to create a space for those stories.
My own personal agenda creeps in – I’ll be totally up front about that. I’m focusing on women because I believe that we have a greater tendency to hold ourselves back from making a big leap away from perceived obligations. I think we often have more entrenched doubts about the impact that we can have on others. Obviously many men have similar experiences, but I tend to feel that women draw on the courage of other women in a more profound way. Almost as if we feel it’s OK to break the rules once we’ve seen another woman make a similar move. The next part of my agenda is to focus on women who made a change because they wanted to have a life that contributed to a better world. A life with heart and conscience. Because now more than ever we need to help each other out, rather than relying on politics or economics to sort out the global issues that we face as a society and as individuals. It is the responsibility of normal folk to take a step away from focusing on themselves and start doing something to help make this world a slightly better, more equitable, sustainable and friendly place.
Although I choose stories according to these personal principles, the words here are those of the women themselves. It’s really important that the blogs are true to the realities of their experiences. That means I ask about the difficult moments, the regrets, the challenges and doubts, as well as the progress and achievement. This isn’t about putting individuals on a pedestal to gawp at them and move on, telling ourselves that we would never have the time, money, experience, support, courage to do what they did. These stories are given to you in the hope that you’ll see how things could be if you just take that first step towards making a change. What a women can do with a little bit of encouragement and a little bit of will.