Dreams for My Daughter – Creating the World We Want for Our Children

Today, March 8th marks the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day, celebrated around the world. Gender equality, child health and maternal health are three of the cornerstones of the United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals as well as the work of the White Ribbon Alliance. The world we create for our children will depend strongly on our success in achieving these goals.

Here, dignitaries from across the world to share their views on the world they want to create for the women of tomorrow. These ‘Dreams for My Daughter’ reflect some universal themes worldwide—families hope that their daughters will have an education, choose when and who to marry, if and when to have children, and, unlike the 1000 women who die every day for lack of health care, to have healthy pregnancies and safe childbirths. What were your own dreams—and did they come true?

Goodlifer: Dreams for My Daughter: Princess Sarah Zeid

Princess Sarah Zeid, wife of Jordanian ambassador to US Prince Zeid bin Ra’ad, Jordan
“For my daughters, I dream of a world where their voices are heard and their rights respected: the right to choose; the right to an education; the right to be healthy mothers of their own healthy children. I dream that my girls will grow to be happy, confident, strong women who love life and follow their own path. I dream that they are curious and considerate, wise global citizens who will make a positive contribution. Lastly, I dream that they will share their lives with people who love, value and cherish them for who they are. Just as I do.”

Goodlifer: Dreams for My Daughter: Maureen McTeer

Maureen McTeer, wife of former Prime Minister Joe Clark, lawyer and women health and rights advocate, Canada
“So many of my dreams for my daughter, Catherine, have already come true. She has grown up to be a mature, kind, beautiful and accomplished adult with a family of her own. She now has dreams for her own daughter. Every mother dreams a happy future for their children. But not all dreams come true—violence, war, poverty lurk in so many corners and abuse so many lives. They shatter our dreams for our daughters and their dreams for themselves. Some dare not even try to dream. My dreams are not just for my daughter, but for all of our daughters, wherever they may be. May we find the will for true peace, may we build fairness and equality into all of our lives, and may we share and care for the bounty and beauty of our earth. Perhaps then, all of our daughters’ dreams can come true.”

Goodlifer: Dreams for My Daughter: Linah Jebil Kilimo

Linah Jebil Kilimo, Member of Parliament and Chair, Kenyan Women’s MP Group, Kenya
“I dream of the day we shall have a perfect world for the daughters of the world. Where our daughters will give life in a comfortable environment, i.e. a hospital. A world where survival for their children without complications at birth is guaranteed. A world where talking about reproductive health for our daughters will not be an embarrassing topic. A world where the topic of women in childbirth will be discussed freely. A world where the monster called Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) will be no more. Yes FGM, the major cause of complications during childbirth will not haunt our daughters of the world. A world where our daughters will celebrate being born a girl.”

Goodlifer: Dreams for My Daughter: Ibrahim Sorie

Ibrahim Sorie, Member of Parliament, Sierra Leone
“My Dream for my Daughter and Daughters of this world is to have a world free of oxygen shortages that kill pregnant women while giving birth. A world where the basics of safe child delivery are always present.”

Goodlifer: Dreams for My Daughter: Rose Mlay

Rose Mlay, WRA-Tanzania National Coordinator, Tanzania
“My Dream is to advocate and continue advocating with politicians, policy and decision makers nationally and globally until these leaders stop declarations and start illustrations to ensure mothers and newborns worldwide are safe and healthy during childbirth regardless of their social and economic status.”

Goodlifer: Dreams for My Daughter: Beatrice Rwakimari

Beatrice Rwakimari, Member of Parliament and Chair, Ugandan Parliamentary Committee on HIV/AIDS and Member, WRA Global Board, Uganda
“My wish is to see my daughter, her daughters, her grandchildren and generations to come live a much better life than myself, more meaningful, enriching and fulfilling socially, economically and politically; where women and girls are treated with dignity and the respect that they deserve and accorded equal opportunities with men and boys. To grow up in a loving, safe and healthy environment free of defilement, rape, human sacrifice, all forms of violence, neglect, pornography, all forms of drugs, sexual immorality, corruption, negative cultural practices like FGM. Where both parents dedicate enough time to her to inculcate in her basic competences in life such as decision making, self confidence and esteem and negotiation skills so that she is able to take decisions that affect her life especially her reproductive rights. To go to school, stay and complete her education with good grades so that she can get a job of her dreams, to become economically, socially, and politically empowered so that she can lead a decent, satisfying and qualitative life. To get a decent, educated, prosperous, kind and God fearing husband, free from any form of violence, who will love and respect her as his wife, plan together as a family especially on how many children to have, when and how often. Live in a country where there is efficient and effective health care services with hospitals and health centers which are adequately equipped with motivated and well remunerated skilled health workers, obstetric care facilities, supplies like gloves, drugs to stop bleeding, blood, ambulances, water, electricity to mention but a few. A country where family planning services are available, accessible, affordable and applicable to the people to reduce or stop unwanted and, or unplanned pregnancies which are a major cause of unsafe abortions which have contributed to the high maternal morbidity and mortality in Uganda. I pray that she becomes one of the champions/advocates at the highest level to make pregnancy and childbirth safe and healthy for all mothers and babies in Uganda; and ensuring that maternal health is both a human rights issue and a development issue, not necessarily a women’s issue.”

Goodlifer: Dreams for My Daughter: Nuala O'Loan

Nuala O’Loan, House of Lords, United Kingdom
“That the women of the world will have access to trained help throughout pregnancy and birth; that they may give birth in safe, clean places they can get to; and they will not be subjected to female genital mutilation so that giving birth will not be too difficult. That they may be able to take their rightful place in the world.”

Top photo by Ramyo, Creative Commons

About author
A designer by trade, Johanna has always had a passion for storytelling. Born and raised in Sweden, she's lived and worked in Miami, Brooklyn and, currently, Ojai, CA. She started Goodlifer in 2008 to offer a positive outlook for the future and share great stories, discoveries, thoughts, tips and reflections around her idea of the Good Life. Johanna loves kale, wishes she had a greener thumb, and thinks everything is just a tad bit better with champagne (or green juice).
1 comment on this postSubmit yours
  1. Lovely articles Johanna, and truly worthy causes.

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