REINSW WIRE Conference

31 March 2021 Shelley Richardson

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Our team recently attended the REINSW WIRE Conference and were inspired by each and every speaker. We asked our Candidate Manager Shelley to pick out who inspired her most and why…

So, who inspired you most at WIRE?

Although all the speakers were amazing, I was definitely most inspired by Manal Al Sharif, who co-founded and led the #Women2Drive movement, to challenge the ban on women driving in her home country of Saudi Arabia. After tireless campaigning, in June of 2018 the Saudi government lifted the ban on women driving. 

She has an amazing story, what did you take away from listening to her?

Manal sacrificed so much for the movement, including being arrested and imprisoned, and is a total inspiration. She is a reminder to always stand up for what you believe in!

She recently posted these closing remarks on her LinkedIn, which I thought summed her message up beautifully:

Giving a live speech to 300 women for the first time since COVID hit was a beautiful feeling.

Here are my closing remarks (it was my 4th year anniversary immigrating to Australia and living under self-imposed exile):

“When I moved to Australia 4 years ago
I thought the struggle as a woman is over
I’m finally free to be whatever I want
Only to be faced with different obstacles

It made me realize that it’s not about Saudi women or Australian women, it is about WOMEN.

It’s about women trying to survive in a world that runs with rules men created in our absence and we were asked to find ways to fit in this world

It’s time women take control back and declare the F-revolution (F in female not the F word) and start rewriting the rules

No matter where you are in the world
No matter what you are fighting for
You matter
Your fight matters
Because the fight for women’s rights anywhere in the world
Is the fight for all women in the world”