Shayena S. TeenzTalk Peer Leader
1. What are you passionate about?
2. What have you learned from challenges or disappointments?
3. How do you relieve stress?
4. What is happiness?
1.) PASSION: Shayena is passionate about women's empowerment. Through one of her projects, SaniStitch, her team reaches out to rural communities & promotes open dialogue on menstruation & acceptance of this natural physiologic process - warding off negative cultural taboos. They teach women to sew their own reusable feminine products & educate families on the importance of proper hygiene. She looks forward to pursuing many more women's initiatives & believes this area will be a central focus throughout her life. Photos of her work with SaniStitch are included at the end of the video.
2.) GROWTH: Passionate about reaching out to rural communities, Shayena was disappointed after initially being rejected by the locals & viewed as an outsider, trying to influence their traditions. Because of her dedication to improving women's health, she did not give up on her initiative. She considered the cultural barriers, improved communication, demonstrated the benefits of her project, & finally persevered in gaining their acceptance.
3.) STRESS RELIEVERS:
- write poetry
- reflect on the world & other people's situations
- talk to people
4.) HAPPINESS: Shayena finds happiness by being satisfied with what she has. "I like to be aware of the different ways that people live in my own country... After working with so many women [in rural India], I am more grateful for what I have." Additionally, she emphasizes that happiness in India comes from connecting with family.