Learning about Strong Women of Iran

Traveling teaches and shows you things that you would have never realized before. Fighting with the Poor found that they would like to change their topic and research closer to their hearts. This lead them to investigate while traveling Iran and learning about culture.

Fighting with the Poor team in Iran

This is where it all started: staying with locals we found that we, as women, wanted to analyze the situation of women in different countries. 

The journey

Our journey on this investigation started with a guy called Ali from Teheran, whom we met in Hornsjoe the last summer, and he introduced us to his friends Sara, Amin and their son, who became our hosts. While staying with them, we began to realize the real local life for women and difference between the public and the private space.

We found out that there are women like Sara, who see religion more traditionally. She doesn’t want to show her hair to other men unless it is her husband and there are women, like her friends, who prefer not to were hijab whenever they can. In fact, if they could choose, they wouldn’t wear the hijab in private or public space.

Traveling in Iran

Teaching and learning English

Another impressive woman we met was Pooneh, who hosted us in Isfahan with her husband, Bijan in their small apartment. She became our sister as we are quite like-minded: young, curious about our lives and lifestyle. She even took us a day off work to spend time with us and show us her workplace. Inside the center, they were not wearing the hijab. They didn’t even want us to wear the scarf around our neck.

The primary motivation for many of these women to learn English was that their children had moved outside of Iran and married foreigners. They were really curious about our personal lives. Their were asking question about family, boyfriends, marriage, food and many other things. Even if we would be interested marrying an Iranian man. One of them offered her brother! We are still in contact with Pooneh.

Kerman Desert

While we where traveling Iran in Kerman Desert. There we met two women: Mina and the manager of our hostel. Mina was a young married woman that was traveling with her husband. She is an English teacher and as we found out a rebel in the Iranian system: she loves to dance…and they took us to dance in the desert. It is the only place where there are no people around so we could be free to dance and to go without hijab. 

The manager of our hostel was an elder woman and the only member of this family business that spoke English. She was very kind to us, and she was managing the hole hostel by herself with the help of her daughters. She was a Strong Independent Woman in a men’s society.

Traveling in Iran

Shiraz

In Shiraz, we met Arezoo and her daughter Ava. Arezoo who is in her late 20’s, studies to become a nurse while taking care of her seven-year-old daughter. Both of them are living alone in an apartment. It’s very unusual as she is a single mother and women only live with their husband or their family. In the private area, she is free as most of her friends are men and she can hang out with them openly.

Traveling Iran, we were overwhelmed by people’s hospitality and their kindness. Also, we were happily surprised to find Iran to be safe, breaking the perceptions we had before going. We realized that the government and the people of Iran are opposites: the values of the Government are not always reflected on what the people’s values are. In fact, we didn’t meet anyone who was happy with the Government.

Anna, Cassandra, Daniela and Aina FWP

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BTP period – 3 months

Returning to school with heads and hands full of new knowledge and energy for Bringing it to the Public. Meeting with the team, showing, telling, exchanging experiences and making it common knowledge.

Producing articles, pamphlets, videos, presentations, exhibitions, speeches for debate forums, books and more. Studying further the curriculum in Fighting with The Poor, bringing the truth to the public. 

Going to different schools around Europe to spread the new knowledge in various creative ways – speeches, newspaper articles, lectures at universities and colleges, debates and other public events, exhibitions – leading to a better understanding and inspiring to take an action.

Passing the final exams in Fighting with The Poor. Using the last months together to conclude our future perspectives and possible ways of improving The Poor’s quality in life with humble ways of sharing knowledge.

Volunteer period – 6 months

The Project Work in Africa or India in cooperation with Humana People to People. In this period, you can work at:

  • Teacher training colleges
  • Educating teachers for rural areas
  • Vocational schools for young people
  • Schools for street children.Preschools
  • Sanitation and hygiene in rural areas
  • Tree planting campaigns
  • Raising funds for social projects by forming partnerships and selling second hand clothes and shoes
  • Stopping the spread of HIV/AIDS (following the program TCE/Total Control of the Epidemic)

Arriving at the project in Africa or India, having left behind a courageous journey where fundamental human capabilities have been turned around, refreshed and energised by knowing that things such as travelling can be done in a totally different way than the mainstream tourist travelling.

Ready for doing the work needed at the project, bringing plans and materials from the previous periods. Getting to know the people at the project, the vision and idea of the project and the many concrete tasks to be carried out.

Carrying out the tasks as defined within the necessities of the project and by the Project Leadership. Fighting shoulder to shoulder with The Poor: building preschools, starting Garden Farming, doing literacy campaigns, eradicating malaria, teaching about big issues of our time while working as a teacher at DNS, starting income-generating activities, working as a TCE Special Force in the fight against HIV/AIDS – as a few examples.

Studying and working with your Specialisation in Fighting with The Poor, finalising with a People’s Exam and a written thesis at the end of the period. Acquiring skills in information work: making interviews, taking notes and pictures, writing summaries and reports, recording videos.

Living together with the people at the project, being a good example of living a humble life while improving things with small means to make daily life better.

Travel period – 3 months

Living on the road, being on the move, finding means of transport and places to sleep, talking to people on the road, being curious to understand and know about the countries you are traveling through.

Making investigations, meeting people, visiting their workplaces, staying in their homes, understanding their problems, meeting their culture and values and sharing thoughts with them about the world and the future.

Telling people about your venture to a third world country, trying out bringing it to the public what you have so far experienced and learned. Putting up investigations on a higher level, asking tough questions to self and to the group, getting hold of more answers and putting up new questions.

Taking notes and pictures, writing reports and discussing the seen and the experienced.
Finding good ways of sticking together in the Trios and in the group as such during the travel period.

Study Period – 6 months

At this school, you will find that learning is not first and foremost about listening to the teacher.

The school’s Program consists of a range of intense and spirited activities, theoretical studies and experiences that constitute the sum of learning and life processes carried through by a group of people who for a considerable period of time share a Program with each other that demands cooperation and efforts, and which at the same time is sprinkled with elements that are inspiring and also quite out of the ordinary.

Thus, learning will also take place through communication, deliberations, through working out your plan for learning and sticking to it, and putting to use what you learned, the methods you used, the ideas you got from it and the results you harvested from the training.

You will train yourself in being adventurers and survivors, living and traveling under very humble conditions, not using much money and always finding a way out by ingenuity, being smart and sticking together with your teammates.