Munira Alimire on Female Empowerment and Gender Equality

Meet The Homegirl: Photographer, Girl Up Teen Advisor, Women's Advocate

By Aishwarya Babuji

Seventeen-year-old Munira Alimire embodies the phrase “solidarity in sisterhood.”

While tackling rigorous schoolwork, being accepted into Stanford, and living her best teenage life, Munira fights relentlessly for the rights of those who can’t fight for themselves. She wakes up every day motivated to take action to protect and represent the people of our nation who are overlooked by their government.

To Munira, empowerment isn’t a state of being; instead, it is a tool that enables women and others who have been belittled. It revitalizes them with the strength that they already have within themselves.

As a Teen Advisor for the Girl Up Campaign, Munira promotes gender equality and aids women. Launched by the United Nations Foundation, the Girl Up campaign is centered on female empowerment and gives young women the resources to grow into strong leaders. This much-needed and much-praised campaign operates worldwide, ensuring the progress and development of every woman.

Munira believes that every woman is “her own knight in shining armor,” and that she doesn’t need the help of others, especially men, to prosper. They just need a little reminder--a push in the right direction--to remember that they are the ones who hold the reins, and that they themselves can create their own success.

As a Somali American and black Muslim woman, Munira faces racism, Islamophobia, and sexism routinely. Therefore, Munira’s identity is a big part of her life. Her activism is fueled by her own plights and issues. The immediacy of her connection to all that she advocates for makes her work powerful.

Munira also identifies as a minority in a Eurocentric nation. Like many other young women of color, she longed for the celebration and recognition of people who looked and spoke like her, not just of women who were the fairest of all. Munira took matters into her own hands. She started interviewing many black women, who were gorgeous on the inside and out, to commemorate Black History Month this year.

One important aspect of her project was the fact that Munira took moving and powerful photographs of all her interviewees. These encapsulated the vigor and strength that the inspirational women exude to the world every single day.

Munira encourages her fellow Homegirls to remember that strength comes from within. If someone decides to waste their energy on tearing a woman down, that is their own loss. She firmly believes that as long as women fight for themselves and their beliefs, and goodness will prevail. She captures this goodness in every photograph.