Developing leaders for gender justice is a critical part of our work. In fact, Jahajee Sisters began because existing community leaders were not speaking up on issues impacting women.
From 2010-2012, we held 3 week-long Young Women’s Leadership Institutes to support young women to build their gender justice analysis and challenge gender-based violence. Two of those institutes focused on young Muslim women, a marginalized group within the community with unique experiences. Our alumni have gone on to take their places in the social justice movement as advocates and organizers, and to assume leadership positions in community-based organizations. We are currently holding our 2017 Leaderships & Empowerment Institute, our first 6 month multi-generational leadership program. We are engaging 20 women and gender-nonconforming people ages 18-60 in a training that will: 1) provide personal transformation tools and practices for women to heal from trauma and become bold, courageous leaders who speak truth to power; 2) teach political education that will allow women to build a shared, intersectional gender justice analysis needed to disrupt the generational legacy and cultural normalization of gender-based oppression; and, 3) create a leadership pipeline that supports emerging leaders to carry out advocacy efforts that transform our community as well as plug into the larger social justice movement.