Society teaches us from the day we are born that girls will grow up liking pink and barbies, wanting to play dress ups and eventually be mothers. This social conditioning doesn’t present girls as potential businesswomen, politicians, scientists, or leaders so we tend to underestimate their ability to fill these roles.
Christina Yiannakis curates WOMAN.com.au’s World Wide Women. And it’s clear she’s a woman on a mission.
I came across woman.com.au after I returned from an internship with a women’s organisation in Sri Lanka. The organisation I interned with promotes women’s rights in the workplace, focusing on the garment industry. Their proactive approach to women’s equality inspired me to become more involved with women’s rights in any way possible, so when I stumbled across this webpage I knew I wanted to be an ambassador. I want to promote and support women with business and political aspirations, and woman.com.au does exactly that.
I’m currently working at the International Women’s Development Agency part time while holding down a casual job at a bookshop and completing a Masters in International Relations at the University of Melbourne! Add my weekly woman.com.au article and you can probably imagine that I’m pretty tired a lot of the time. However, my work ethic, time management skills and passion for women’s rights is what got me here and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else at this point in my life.
At 27 I have visited 40 countries, worked in Perth’s film and theatre industry, taught English in Greece, been an assistant manager at a variety of stores, relocated to Melbourne and worked as a travel agent. Throw in a double degree and now post graduate studies and I’d have to say that it is almost impossible to decide what lesson I have learnt that stands out as the biggest of all. I guess that one of my life’s biggest lessons so far has been to learn be honest and not to underestimate the value of my work?
I want to be an advocate for women’s rights, who unites women and men to work towards equality.
My family instilled a strong sense of justice in me growing up. It’s this that gets me going in the morning, motivates me to study and work hard, and encourages me to step out of my comfort zone and speak up.
Sexism and racism. I am often shocked into a silent rage when people express outdated opinions on gender roles and ethnic stereotypes.
I get up early for yoga or a power walk in the local park then I hit the books and study. Around noon I’ll either go to class or I’ll take some time out to write my weekly article for woman.com.au. Then I head to work at IWDA and get home in time to cook dinner. My favourite way to end the day is by sharing a meal with my housemates, who have become like a family to me.