What is social justice?
It’s a phrase that is thrown around so commonly, but have we lost the essence of what it means?
On Thursday, I attended a conference where social justice leaders spoke about practical implementation for bringing change for those who are marginalised.
It feels like there are too many worthy causes to support in this day & age…
I’m often wondering — how can I help?
There are so many different avenues to get involved & make a difference
Sometimes I think that there’s a perception that many of the causes in need are ‘too big to make an impact in’
It’s a concept that I want to explore further moving forward
I learnt many things this morning at this breakfast but I wanted to share 2 practical ideas that I believe we can all do to make a tangible difference
1) Engage In A Conversation
They say the first step in breaking a bad habit is acknowledging that you have one. In the same way, I believe that the first step to bringing change is to get people talking about.
There are things in the world that simply should not be happening –
Homelessness, poverty, racism & the refugee situation are just a few…
Even though we know in the back of our mind that people are suffering, we don’t pay much attention to it.
The ‘out of sight & out of mind’ theory is liberally applied whenever it is convenient.
I truly believe that a simple discussion can make a difference. If we’re all talking about critical issues that matter instead of celebrity gossip & the weather, it will mean that the people with the power to enact change will listen up.
Activism is not futile and we are not powerless.
Individually, we may not be able to change the world… however if we stand together, we can be the generation to bring change.
“Never doubt that a small group of committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has” — Margaret Mead
2) Take Time Out To Listen
As a generation, we’re busy.
I totally get that – we all have things to do, places to be & people to see.
It seems like we take in the vast majority of our information only from these devices in our hands… sometimes I ask myself –
Have we lost our human touch?
It’s very easy to disregard people’s plights when we view them as a statistic.
“795 million people in the world are suffering from chronic undernourishment” is a figure that may make me wince, but the reality is that it’s not enough to evoke action from me.
However if I was to sit with just 3 of these people and hear their stories about the lack of food & how it’s affected their life and everyone around them, I know I would be hard-pressed not to try & find a solution.
It might be time to stop judging & start learning
Empathy is never wasted.
I feel that in a world with so much information, in a way we’ve forgotten what it means to care for our fellow brothers & sisters.
Maybe we can’t change the world, but for someone who has felt voiceless for so long, just sitting and chatting to them may mean the world.
“A simple conversation has the potential to change someone’s life”
Instead of trying to change the world, if we reign in our sights and try and make a difference to individuals lives I think the world would be better off.
So what is social justice?
The question still stands, but if I had to give a definition here it goes –
Social justice is the notion that everyone deserves equal rights & opportunities.
Now does that mean that everyone will have the same life?
No, of course not. It simply means that everyone will have access to the same opportunities
What someone makes of this, is what defines them.
It makes no sense for a select few of us ‘lucky ones’ to be playing chess while many others around the world are playing checkers.
Everyone deserves a fair shot at life.
Maybe the world won’t flip over & change in an instant, but I know that over time we have the ability to make a difference.
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If you haven’t yet, please check out my other blog posts – Introduction: Who is Nahu, The Night I Almost Died, What Mary Taught Me, Are Our Lives Really That Bad, When Life Forgot The Lemons, The Life Lessons From Tanning, What’s The Worst That Can Happen?, My 4 Favourite European Cities, Time Isn’t Real, Life Without a Father, Running A Half-Marathon, Stories From The Street, Filter Bubbles, The Growth Mindset & My Biggest Fear!