International Women's Day: Emma Howan on being a person who makes space
Lt. Emma Howan is a young officer who has recognised the universal need during COVID-19 for people to have space. Not just 'social distancing space - but a space held by others to allow you room to speak, be heard and process your reality with someone pausing to truly hear.
We invite you to download and share this and our other International Women's Day testimonies with your community (link below). The following is a transcript from the video:
Living with COVID-19 in our world has seen us learning to live with a great deal of uncertainty from one day to the next.
But in it, something that has remained constant is our ability to remain in contact with each other - it’s just not always face to face. More and more, I'm seeing that the people we journey with, regardless of age, need spaces as a way of processing their thoughts.
Spaces to share:
to share concern around the latest news
to share their concern of not knowing what the school year is going to look like
to share their fears of family and friends overseas
to share of their changes at work
to share their disappointment of a cancelled event
to share the usual ups and downs of life.
Sharing what can often be an unedited, somewhat-muddled, deeply-emotive train of thought. For me, in these times of COVID-19, God has been teaching me a lot about making space. Making space for people of all ages to speak what they’re experiencing and feeling.
*Toddler sharing space and noises*
Pausing to listen, and then sitting in the uncertainty together.
It's about allowing that coffee to take the whole morning, having space to just chat in staff meetings, sending checking-in messages, open testimony times without time pressures and calling someone. It can be easy to make space for each other when there's something to organise, to plan or to be filled in on - but this is connecting with each other with no agenda. To make space, to listen, to sit in together.
People aren't always seeking answers - just someone to hear them.
Will you join me in seeking to be someone who makes space, who pauses to listen more deeply?
We're celebrating International Women's Day by sharing women's testimonies of leadership during COVID in New Zealand, Fiji, Tonga and Samoa Territory. We will be releasing new videos daily, and joining a worldwide video montage on The Salvation Army International Social Justice Commission's Facebook Page on March 8th. We invite you to share and view these stories with your community, to amplify their voices!
- CHECK OUT the other Salvationist Stories here (updated daily)
- VIEW the videos on Youtube (captions available)
- VIEW and SHARE from our Facebook Page
- DOWNLOAD the video files from OneDrive