22 March 2018

Canberra’s premier leadership development event for girls in years 11 and 12 has kicked off today.

YWCA Canberra’s She Leads College Conference will take place at the University of Canberra and feature some of Australia’s most accomplished young women leaders, including event MC and local Canberra activist and comedian, Codie Bell.

Ms Bell is a passionate advocate for gender equality, and is a strong voice for the elimination of sexual harassment and assault at Australian institutions, after her own lived experience as a victim of intimate partner violence on a university campus.

“Events such as the She Leads College Conference are critical to achieving gender equality. Progress starts with empowering young women to lead in their own communities,” Ms Bell said.

“I’m excited to participate in an event that supports young women to develop the courage and confidence to push for positive change, and equips them with the knowledge and skills to overcome some of the challenges they may be facing now, or as they enter adulthood.”

YWCA Canberra Executive Director Frances Crimmins said she is committed to strengthening community awareness of gender equality and developing women’s leadership through the She Leads program.

“We believe that providing leadership pathways for women is so important. We know the benefits of the countless contributions that women make through taking a leadership role in their schools, universities, workplaces and communities, and that it is essential women’s unique perspectives and experiences are acknowledged.

“Through our She Leads suite of events for Canberra women and girls, we are providing attendees with the opportunity to explore their own leadership identity, consider how gender inequality may impact their experiences, and ultimately supporting them to participate in decision-making processes at all levels”, she said.

The She Leads College Conference take place at the Ann Harding Conference Centre at the University of Canberra from 8:30 – 4pm on Thursday 22 March.

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Media contact: Helen Machalias 0455 655 330

Download: Media release – Young Canberra women leading the next generation to gender equality

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