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Confidence key to self-worth, conference hears

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International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women: Pictured- Maya Palacio (left), McKenzie-Kohl Tuckett, Malay Robinson and Christianna Warren (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women: Pictured- Maya Palacio (left), McKenzie-Kohl Tuckett, Malay Robinson and Christianna Warren (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Teenagers covered confidence, social media and relationships when they marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

Malay Robinson, Christianna Warren and McKenzieKohl Tuckett took part in a panel discussion at Government House.

The talk was moderated by Maya Palacio, the woman behind Media Maya.

Alison Crocket, the Deputy Governor, said: “I hear people say, sometimes, why do we have to have a day of elimination of violence against women, all violence is abhorrent and all violence should be stopped – I agree with that.”

She added: “One in three women globally will experience violence of some nature … 72 per cent of people who are trafficked are women and there have been reports from the UN just recently that the helplines, globally, for domestic violence during this Covid pandemic in some countries had gone up by five-fold.

“So there is a very serious issue of violence perpetrated against women. It is disproportionate and that’s why there is a day every year to focus on it.”

The talk, held on November 25, had the theme: “How do we instil value in our young women?”

Ms Palacio asked the group to talk about their thoughts on “self-worth”.

Ms Warren, 16, said: “I think it’s mainly about caring for yourself, showing some love, some respect.”

Ms Robinson, 18, pointed out that people who see value in themselves can be labelled as “cocky or arrogant”.

She added: “To me, that’s not a bad thing.”

The Bermuda College student said that showing confidence was simply “being you”.

She added: “You have to love yourself in order for anyone to even … care about you.”

Ms Tuckett, 17, said: “When I hear self-worth, I think about understanding myself, understanding that I’m worthy and that I can’t let anyone tell me otherwise, but also understanding the importance of confidence and self-confidence, being able to instil that confidence in myself and not having to depend on anyone else to instil that in me.”

Ms Robinson highlighted the importance of mentorship and said children and teenagers can learn to think differently about their experiences, for example if they have witnessed violence at home.

She added: “If you see an older person that has gone through it, it makes you feel that you’re not alone."

Ms Tuckett highlighted some of the challenges for young people using social media.

She said: “The biggest issue that I have as a young lady is about body image and the consistent reminder of the stereotypical perfect body for a female that’s portrayed on social media.”

Ms Tuckett, a Warwick Academy pupil, said she reminded herself “they’re showing me what they want me to see”.

The panel was asked about how to tackle emotional violence online.

Ms Tuckett said that if young people felt confident and valued before they started using social media they might be less affected by unpleasant experiences.

She added: “I think that where it’s important is in saying, what can I do to prepare them beyond the screen?

“Before they get to the social media, it’s going back to self-worth, it’s going back to confidence.”

Ms Tuckett said that if those qualities were reinforced in a young person, by the time they used social media there might be less to worry about.

She added: “They know their ideals, they know what they stand by, they know their self-worth.

“Because they know that, anything that’s a form of emotional violence … anything like that they experience isn’t going to impact them as much … because you have already prepared them for it outside of the screen.”

A reception held after the talk started with a performance by CedarBridge Academy pupils involved in the Noire Youth Theatre Company.

It also marked the launch of a new website for Hive Bermuda, which works on Healing Individuals from Violence and Emotional Abuse.

The group is a network of charities, including Centre Against Abuse, the Women’s Resource Centre, Safe Space Bermuda, and Pathways.

· For more information on Hive Bermuda or to volunteer, contact Crystal Swan, the Government House executive officer, at executiveofficer@gov.bm. The website can be found atwww.hivebermuda.com

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Published December 05, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated December 04, 2020 at 7:18 pm)

Confidence key to self-worth, conference hears

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