12 Feb G Day Stories: Zoya
Zoya Jiwa is one of our G Day speakers. She was kind enough to answer a few questions about herself and G Day. Let’s get to know her a little, shall we?
What was life like for you as a 10-12 year old girl?
Overall, I was happy. I put a lot of my time into school and studying since grades were important to me, and I loved learning. I wanted to be involved in every extracurricular activity. Over the course of the school year, I played a variety of sports ranging from soccer to basketball, and found ways to embrace my creativity through music, drama, and fine arts. Growing up, I was taught to follow my passions and try my best. Socially, however, I remember there being some ups and downs. I remember that fitting in with others and being popular seemed important. I had some great friends, but there were definitely moments where friendships were strained over gossip or misunderstandings.
Why are you participating in G Day?
I am participating in G Day because I would have loved to truly understand and discuss the changes that were going on in my life during adolescence. G Day presents young girls with the opportunity to speak honestly and ask questions about the overwhelming pressures and messages they may be facing. It’s a healthy, open space to share stories and connect with others in meaningful ways. It’s a beautiful, inspiring, refreshing approach to encourage girls to be proud of who they are and to embrace what makes them wonderfully unique. If I had the opportunity to attend G Day when I was younger, I think it would have prevented the self-image struggles I endured in my teen years. I’m so grateful and honoured to be part of this exciting day!
What pieces of advice might you have for your adolescent self?
If I were to give any advice to my adolescent self, I would encourage her to embrace her talents and surround herself with inspiring people. I would also remind her to be gentle, caring, and kind towards herself and others.
We very much look forward to hearing more of your story on G Day, Zoya. Follow her on Twitter for more inspiration and insight.