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What Makes Us Stronger

A podcast from Women for Women International!

Season 3:

Season Three of What Makes us Stronger is back with new stories of courageous women in conflict zones. In the coming episodes, host Nisha Singh, hears from a group of men in a former ISIS stronghold in Iraq who’re ditching toxic masculinity for gender equality. Girls in Afghanistan and elsewhere explain how they are taking back their right to go to school.  And we’ll find out why - for some refugees - a taste from home can be the first step towards solidarity in a strange land.   

Episode 1: A Taste of Home

What is it about the food we eat that connects us to the places we’re from? For refugees fleeing conflict, cooking an old family recipe can be a treasured connection to a lost homeland. In this episode, we’ll hear from two women displaced by war, Women for Women International’s Storai Ahmadi and Zeina Kanawati from Women Now for Development about what they cook that reminds them of home. Nisha also talks to Heifa Odeh, Palestinian-American chef, Fufu’s Kitchen food blogger and author of Dine in Palestine about the recipes handed down through generations of her family. 

Season 2:

What makes us resilient in times of crisis? And how does conflict and hardship shape who we are? What Makes Us Stronger features the voices of courageous women who’ve lived through unbelievably difficult times in countries like Afghanistan, Syria, and South Sudan, and explores how each of them took on new roles and found the strength to keep going.

Season Two of What Makes Us Stronger is coming with more stories of courageous women in conflict zones. In the coming episodes, host Nisha Singh, hears from women in Nigeria about the technology that is changing their lives in ways they didn’t expect. Survivors in the Democratic Republic of the Congo speak out about the stigma attached to sexual violence, and we’ll uncover the stories of women in Afghanistan, who’re daring to show up for the women’s rights movement. 

This season is brought to you thanks to the players of People’s Postcode Lottery with funds awarded by Postcode Justice Trust in support of women survivors of war. 

Episode 4: Rebuilding and Resilience: Lessons from Rwandan Women

It’s thirty years since more than eight hundred thousand people were killed in the Rwandan genocide. In the aftermath of the violence, Rwandans have worked hard to rebuild a devastated and divided country. In this episode, Nisha hears from Emerence, one of thousands of ordinary Rwandans who were asked to do something extraordinary: forgive the people who killed their families.  Nisha also talks to Berna Rusagara, the Executive Director of Women for Women Rwanda, our sister organization, about what the women of Rwanda can teach the world about peace, resilience and forgiveness.   

*A warning that this episode contains content you might find upsetting including references to violence and sexual violence. 


Episode 3

In this episode, we’ll hear from Rose in the DRC about her experience and Nisha talks to Dr Leyla Hussein, a renowned psychotherapist who provides support to survivors of sexual violence and is a global campaigner for gender rights.   

*A warning that this episode contains content you might find upsetting, including references to sexual violence and FGM*  

Episode 2: #SheDares


In Afghanistan, where women’s lives are severely restricted, defying the system can be dangerous. In this episode, Nisha talks to Nidhi Dagur, Director of Global Communications and External Events at Women for Women International, who recently visited Afghanistan to find out how women there are daring to stand up for their rights, despite the risks.  
Find out more about our #SheDares campaign and donate to receive a #SheDares bracelet handmade by women survivors of war at womenforwomen.org/SheDares 


Episode 1: Closing the Digital Gender Gap

Women in sub–Saharan Africa face the largest digital gender gap in the world. They’re 37 percent less likely than men to use the mobile internet, despite extensive mobile coverage across the continent. But when women access digital financial tools, the evidence shows they take control of much more than just their finances.

Season 1:

Episode 4 - The Sisterhood Effect: 30 Years On

Laurie, Seida and Zainab
Laurie, Seida and Zainab in Bosnia.

Three decades ago, one woman turned a moment of outrage into a movement. Today, the organization Zainab Salbi started during the conflict in Bosnia has reached over half a million women survivors of war all over the world. In this special episode, Women for Women International's CEO, Laurie Adams travels back to Bosnia with Zainab to learn the story of out how it all began and to find out why, thirty years later, the sisterhood effect is needed more than ever.  



Episode 3

Even though most farm workers in developing countries are women, very few of them own the land they work on. Some rural communities ignore the law and forcibly seize land from women or prevent them from buying or inheriting land in the first place. In this episode, Nisha hears from Angelique, a Congolese woman who tried to persuade a skeptical community that she had just as much right to own land as her husband. Nisha also talks to Rachel Boketa, the Country Director of Women for Women International in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Sabreen Alikhan, our Director of Monitoring, Evaluation, Research and Learning about a project to support women like Angelique to become advocates for equality as well as ‘boss ladies’ in their own right.

How To Listen & Subscribe

What Makes Us Stronger is available wherever you get your podcasts:

Episode 2

In just one year, women’s lives have got a lot harder in Afghanistan. Unable to work, go to school or leave their homes without a male guardian, they are struggling to adapt to new restrictions imposed by the de facto government. In this episode, Nisha talks to Afghan women about what it feels like to lose basic freedoms and what makes them stronger against all the odds.

Episode 1

When you have to leave your home because of war, everything changes. In this episode, we’ll hear from four incredible women who also happen to be refugees. At times of extreme crisis, all our guests found reserves of strength they didn’t know they had and the experience has shaped their lives and futures in ways they didn’t anticipate.

What Makes YOU Stronger?

We want to hear your story of resilience too!
Write to us at media@womenforwomen.org to share what makes you stronger. Your submission may be featured on a future podcast...

woman with tree
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