Silent Truth - Part Three

By: Fida Georges
By: Fida Georges

According to a study commissioned by the Governor's Task Force on the Economic Status of Women..Kentucky is the third worst state for women when it comes to economic stability and well being.
Camp workshops were designed as confidence building activities.

These women say they never expected simple activities such as bead making, journaling, even yoga to evoke strong feelings that would ultimately influence major decisions in their lives.

And an award winning photojournalist was there to capture it all.
The idea of an education was never an option for camp participant Alex - just wishful thinking. But after the camp - that's a different story.

Alex isn't the only one, two additional women who participated in the camp have now enrolled at western.

For Latoya, the camp brought out qualities she never knew she had.

And for Jennifer the camp allowed her to express herself.

For these women, simple workshops and activities evoked emotions they say they need to survive.

Many of these activities were ones they never even considered before.

Women's Studies Director at WKU Dr. Jane Olmsted says workshops that promote self exploration serve as an avenue for confidence building and empowerment.

Prize-winning documentary photographer Jeanie Adams-Smith photographed the camp.

In her remarkable new book, "Survivors: Children of divorce" Adams-Smith photographed families at the worst time of their lives.

She says this camp served another avenue to explore the very real yet often overlooked reality many women face.

Adams-Smith says she plans on using these amazing images to once again bring awareness to women's issues.

Bowling Green Mayor Elaine Walker says the camp is reminder that although Kentucky women's conditions have improved there is still work to be done.

For all who participated in the camp, It's clear that change comes one life at a time - one woman at a time.

This was the first year of the women's camp. Both organizations say they hope to find the funding to make it the first of many to come.

Even if women didn't participate in the camp experts say surrounding yourself with a positive support group - like the camp is the best way to change your circumstances.

Exposing yourself to activities that promote self- esteem. Even if its stepping out of your comfort zone.

Most importantly, know that there are options out there and people and organizations who are willing to help.

The Kentucky Commission on Women is holding a BRADD Area Regional Meeting. The meetings will revisit the needs of women in the BRADD area ( education, equity, leadership, economic sufficiency and Health and well- being) and look into developing projects to assist in working on overcoming obsticles women face in dealing with these issues. The 2006 Regional Meeting Coordinator is Susan Morris.

September 28th, Bowling Green Meeting, 6:30-9pm (CT)
Faith United Methodist Church
380 Veterans Memorial Lane
Bowling Green KY 42101
270-843-8430 (church phone number)

October 10th, Room 131, 6:30-9pm (CT)
Glasgow Regional Center
500 Hilltopper Way
Glasgow, Kentucky 42141
Phone: 270-659-6900
Fax: 270-659-6991

For more on the Women's Studies Program at Western click here:
http://
www.wku.edu/womensstudies

For more on the study and statistics click here:
http://women.ky.gov

For more on the work of Jeanie Adams-Smith click here:
http://www.survivorscod.com


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