Celebrating The Women In Our Lives, In Honor Of Women’s History Month

No One Else Like Her
My mom gave birth to and raised eleven children. She is an awesome person, always giving and kind. No one else makes my life as great as she does. She can’t really speak or understand English but she knows that education is the key to a successful future. She literally does everything for all of my siblings and me. She cooks, cleans and cares for all of us. All she asks is for us to try our best in school and take our education seriously.

She’s been through so much as a Hmong refugee who escaped the war in Laos and came to America. My father passed away a few years ago, so she plays the role of being my mom and dad and keeps the family under control and together. This amazing woman completed my childhood and gave me memories that are priceless, and deserves recognition for the sacrifices she has made for her children.
-Angelina, 17


Appreciation For Her
The strongest woman in my life is my mom because she does a lot for everyone. But when it comes around for her time in need, no one is found. My female relatives and my stepdad’s friends talk down to her and downgrade her. My aunt is always talking about how my mom is too controlling or strict. But that’s not what I call it. To me, she’s “doing her job.” My mom takes care of the bills, food, clothes, comfort, and roof over our heads. What more can we ask for? If I have problems at school, she is there. If I am sick, she is there. If I need money or a ride or even something to eat, she is there. She gives her best at all times. I think it’s because she has a soft heart. She deserves respect and appreciation.

When she has a job, she does 120% and the whole nine yards. I appreciate her a lot, but a lot of her family, including her own, don’t appreciate her. Sometimes I am guilty of this too but for some reason, I see what’s going on and I cherish what she does even if it’s as simple as telling me to put a sweater on.
-Meme, 16


The Woman Who Shaped Me
Every woman that comes into my life, whether girlfriend, grandmother, mother, sister, daughter, friend or aunt has had a role in shaping me. My grandma was the most influential woman in my life. As an African American, she had to overcome racism, discrimination, and other obstacles that accompany being a single mother after losing a spouse. From the women in my life, I realize that a woman’s voice is not heard a lot of the times. I think women should be praised for what they have done for us.
-Marcus, 20


My Amazing “Grams”
My “grams” is the most important person in my life. My life was a mess before I met her but I didn’t realize that everything she gave me was what I needed. I took her for granted many times and I still can’t forgive myself to this day. I didn’t think what she gave me was enough because she wasn’t my mom or dad. But every time I was in trouble she was there for me and I realize there isn’t anything I can do to repay for her everything she has done for me. I never see her make mistakes instead she corrects mine before they happen.

My grandma didn’t get an education but she is a smart and wise person. She provides the house we live in, the food we eat, the clothes we wear—my grandma is “the man”! She does my grandpa’s job too. I love my grandma and respect her very much. My grams changed my life because if I didn’t have her, I would probably be with an alcoholic mother who beats me and then I would be in the streets.

My grandma has overcome many obstacles in her lifetime. She didn’t get an education because she had to work at age six. Her mom abandoned her so her sister raised her and her siblings. My grandma also had eight kids who grew up to be gang bangers and now they regret ever hurting her. As a matter of fact, she still helps them. At least one out of eight is in a stable place and has a family and job because he listened. The others regret not listening. And me, I regret too, but I know that I’m not too late. She most definitely deserves more than I could offer. I know I’m trying my best to make the most important woman in my life happier.
-Maria, 15


The Girl For Me
I met this beautiful girl back in eighth grade. Her name happens to be Suzanna. When I first talked with her, it was a different kind of talk. We were not discussing homework or friends, we were talking about our goals and dreams. I was absorbed into deep conversations and endless hours on the phone with her. She was incredible and the most amazing lady I had met.

Ever since that day, I began to think more about my life. I wanted a purpose and a reason to strive further. My parents always told me that education can get me anywhere I want to go. My question was, how do I know where I want to go if I don’t even explore the outside world? Fortunately, my question was answered by Suzanna. She told me how she wanted to travel and one day settle in New York City. Her enthusiasm and determination made her so attractive. I knew from that moment she was the one for me.

Another thing I love about her is that she is very respectful and caring. Her attitude and self-esteem is always positive. She is not shy to be herself and that makes her remarkable in every way. Suzanna has changed me to be a better person. She motivates me to do my best in everything. Although she is struggling herself, she always makes sure I have a smile everyday.
-Dasen, 18


Working Mom
My mom has gone through a lot. She’s had to take care of four children and had to keep a job as long as she could before giving birth to each of us. She has had to work less hours and still barely finds a way to make ends meet. She makes food for us to eat. We really thank her for what she does but we wish we could do much more to show her how much we really appreciate her.
-Miguel, 18


Thankful For Women
There are trillions of women in the world. We are going through very similar things everyday. I don’t go a day without thinking about the power of women, and how they inspire me to be driven. Everyday I see different women contribute to the world. Many work long and hard just to support their family. I think all women are remarkable regardless of their past, present, and future because I know that there is a reason behind the work they do.

But so many are often put down because of their gender. In the work field, there are still a lot of women who are treated unfairly, and I highly respect women politicians who choose to run in elections for some of the highest-ranking jobs in the country.

One woman I value is my grandmother who is an amazing person to all of my cousins and me, and not to mention a great mother to my aunts, uncles and my mother. Last but not least, I value my mother. We have had several highs and lows, but she has always been there to support my siblings and me. She works extra hours just to get me that new pair of jeans or shoes, or just some extra spending money. I am extremely thankful to have women in the world because they are all around us as mothers, daughters, sisters, grandmas, aunts, girlfriends or friends.
-Gabby, 17


Remarkable Mom
My mother is remarkable because she has changed my life. Although there are some things I learned on my own, with my mom’s help, I have done so many good things in my life, like improving my grades at school.

My mom has told me many times that I need to have a better life than her. She doesn’t want me to suffer, which is why I am doing better in school. I’m not the same person I used to be back in middle school. My mom and I get along well, we’re like best friends. I can always count on her when I need her. She has taught me that I shouldn’t worry about others but focus on myself. Meaning if other people are doing bad things and not doing their work at school, I shouldn’t worry about that. And I also shouldn’t let others bring me down. I should go for what I really want in my life.

She has also told me that I should never give up for anything and that failure is not an option. That’s basically how my life changed starting from the tenth grade, and now I am a senior. Ever since I had that talk with her, my life has changed. That’s why I know my mom is remarkable.
-Luis, 17


Next To My Mom
My mom is the most influential woman in my life. She is my rock. We always argue and fight and sometimes she’s hard on me, but I know she really just wants what is best for me. My mom is not the most perfect person in the world, but in my eyes, she is. I don’t know anyone who is as strong as my mother.

My mom used to tell me stories about growing up in Laos. She always talked about how she was disobedient and how she got in trouble because she was a tomboy. It wasn’t normal for girls to be outside of their homes. Girls were taught to cook and clean and the boys could do whatever they want. My mom also taught me to keep my mouth shut so I could stay out of trouble. Her stories always made me think of how unfair it is for girls in Laos. If I were in my mothers’ shoes, I’d probably feel oppressed.

Growing up, I could not stand it when my mom would tell me that I was not allowed to do things my brothers were allowed to do because I was a girl, like go out with friends, have a boyfriend, and other things. I used to feel oppressed too. But my mom has taught me to choose my battles and not feel discouraged because there are always going to be people who look down on me. All the people who doubted me and looked down on me will continue to be my motivation. One day, I will be successful and my mother will be there standing next to me.
-Arena, 18

The kNOw Youth Media
The kNOw works to support and equip young people with the journalism and advocacy skills they need to tell their stories and the stories of their communities.

In 2006, over 25 youth began participating in weekly after-school writing workshops where they congregated in the hallway of a two-story building in West Fresno and learned the essentials of creating media and telling their stories. The group evolved over the next five years and is now proudly recognized as The kNOw Youth Media.

Through our program, we create opportunities for our youth participants, who in turn create long-term positive change in their communities. Our approach weaves youth development and youth media innovation to produce our biannual youth publication, multimedia projects, and community forums.

The kNOw began as a project of New America Media, which was the country’s first and largest national collaboration and advocate of 2000 ethnic news organizations. In 2018 The kNOw became a project of Youth Leadership Institute.

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