Ariel Outreach: The Power of Storytelling for African Women
The bonding human experience through storytelling — of struggle, integrity, difficult choices, and hope—amongst these women emerged as a strong river of solidarity as we navigated through our day together.
Lilongwe, Malawi, Feb. 13, 2016
Thank you so much for taking the time to share your expertise to build our group of 20 diverse women last Saturday. From CEOs to managers to wives of ministers, businesswomen, activists and health care professionals — there was a wide range indeed.
They are all more confident and empowered with the skills to effectively communicate and connect with their audiences. It was a powerful time and a joyous one.
The group has bonded well and we are looking at follow up training with this group to keep building ourselves. The big question is how do we get Donna Haley and The Ariel Group to walk this safari with us?
You recall our pre-workshop meeting when we discussed issues of culture, patriarchy, politics, competitiveness among women and the efforts to unite women into a collective tour de force to impact our communities and nation? By teaching us how to use all forms of expression and tap into our passions to deliver compelling stories, we connected with each other.
God bless The Ariel Group for making our remarkable training morning possible.
Come back Donna!
Zilanie Gondwe Nyundo
Chairperson, African Businesswomen Network, ABWNet
This is the wonderful letter I received from Zilanie Nyundo, whose dedication to the advancement of women in business in Malawi made our day together happen.
She mentions the backdrop from which these women have to rise, and it was these circumstances that drove me to return to Malawi in contribution to their efforts. My daughter, Sarah Rawson, who is Head of Reports and Public Information for the United Nations World Food Program in Malawi, made me aware of the immense challenges this population faces every day. After my visit to Malawi two years ago, I was determined to return to help support and engender connection amongst those already working to create change in this third world country.
I am happy to say it was accomplished through the power of storytelling, and in our case, the power and wisdom of these women. The cultural divide between the varied backgrounds of different tribal ancestries, political associations, and religions were melded together by their vulnerability as well as their strength. The bonding human experience through storytelling — of struggle, integrity, difficult choices, and hope—amongst these women emerged as a strong river of solidarity as we navigated through our day together. The power and passion with which they shared their beliefs and dreams created a current so joyful and strong, I have no doubt these women will helm their own ships as they reach their charted destinations. I left impressed, grateful, and moved with the resonant belief that it is through stories that we know one another and grow with one another.