Updated: Oct 2, 2020
Hi friends. My name is Alin, one of the 5 women behind Full Potential. Next week I’ll be launching a project I’ve been working on for months now: the #SwanaWomxn series, featuring incredibly talented women living in the SWANA region. You can find it on IG and FP’s blog!
I want to tell you a little bit about me and why this project is so personal to me.
I was born and raised in Tehran, Iran. My roots are Armenian. Five and a half years ago, my family moved to LA. Before we did, my mom really idealized the U.S and Western culture. She told me about women she knew. Women, working as lead engineers and architects. Women running multinational corporations. Women doing things unheard of in my home country.
For a long time I believed moving out of Iran was the only way I’d have a shot at becoming independent. But let’s just say, you learn a lot in six years. My move to the states helped me understand, the whole globe is stained with patriarchy. Women living in America, the UK, Iran, and more, all struggle in establishing their independence. By the same token, women in all three places are capable of reaching their full potential.
I set out on this project to enlighten myself about driven women living in the SWANA region. Reaching out to them. Connecting with them. Hearing their success stories. Women running full-blown businesses from their kitchen counters. Artists, designers, techies, entrepreneurs, architects, bakers, you name it. --And I can’t wait to share their stories with you.
I’m starting this blog series for three main reasons.
1. I want anyone who will listen to hear about the work these inspirational women are doing. Why? People are influenced and impacted so much more by the things they don’t see, than the things they do.
2. I want to challenge the misconceptions readers might have about the region I grew up in. I want to correct misunderstandings about the region I’m from. Ever so subtly, I’ll make sure to acknowledge that a compulsory hijab doesn’t mean looking like a sack of potatoes; strict bans and regulations on music doesn’t mean the creative talents of music producers, DJs, and vocalists run dry; and, living in the so-called third world does NOT mean you can’t thrive.
3. Lastly, as the blog grows, I want to build a network of SWANA women, living in-and-outside the region. Women who recognize each other. Women who empower and educate each other. Pass along opportunities to each other, celebrate each other. Because we’re stronger together.
I hope you’ll join me.
And while we’re at it, I do want to acknowledge my implicit bias as an Iranian-Armenian. I’m working hard to diversify my circle. But please help! Shed light on the women that inspire you – and inspire us all.
I am VERY excited for this project!!!