A Letter to My Children for the World I Imagine in 2030


May 4, 2015

Jaha Dukureh, FGM Survivor, Founder Safe Hands for Girls

This post is part of the Global Moms Relay. Every time you share this post, Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 (per action), up to $300,000, to four causes helping improve the health and wellbeing of moms and kids worldwide:MAMA, Shot@Life,U.S. Fund for UNICEF and Girl Up. Scroll to the bottom to find out more.

JahaDukureh4In 2030, my Khadija, you will not have to conform to any man’s rule, you will not be anyone’s play-dough and you will not be moulded into figures of any man’s invention.

Come 2030, my baby girl, I hope you will be asking your mom about how she helped make this era the girl generation; a time when your children are born free.

Just because I went through female genital mutilation, it does not mean it’s your or your daughters’ destiny.

Because I was forced into a marriage against my own will at 15, it does not mean you will not be able to make your own choices.

Just because my childhood was taken from me does not mean yours will be taken.

Because I spent most of my life being told what to do, what to be and how to act, what to say and being told what it means to be a woman, does not mean you will suffer the same fate.

Because cancer took my mother away from me does not mean it will steal me away from you.

I took action in order to give you control of your own destiny, but also so your children could exercise the same right.

By 2030 women and girls will feel beautiful despite society’s shallow and insensitive standard of what beauty is.

Education will be a requirement rather than a privilege.

My son will not have to risk his life crossing seas in order to find himself a better future.

My brothers and sisters will have long understood we are one, despite where we are from. We are all foreigners in someone else’s land. Actually we are all foreigners in this world since it’s our destiny that everyone will die.

By 2030 we will have found a cure for cancer and all other illnesses that threaten our existence.

By 2030 we will not be chanting that “black lives matter” because by then we will have fully understood that all lives matter.

Come 2030 we will not displace millions of children because of our love for wars and guns. We will not use guns to kill and wipe out our own species.

My son Muhammed will not have to change his name to Michael to find a job. He will not be afraid to say that he is a Muslim in fear of being called a terrorist.

The world I imagine for my children is one where they are free, happy and able to choose, make their own decisions and not be judged by their skin or faith.

We are one,  despite where we are from.


Watch Jaha Dukureh reading this letter at Moms +SocialGood here.

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