Dolmen Mall celebrated International Womenâ€™s Day onÂ 6thÂ MarchÂ 2020, fourth year in a row, with a Power Talk discussion. The event honoured women from all walks of life including accomplished entrepreneurs, influencers, fitness experts, media luminaries and renowned celebrities. Everybody came together to discuss the future of women in Pakistan and how empowered women can help other women.
The talk was moderated by Faiza Saleem, the originator of the first-ever all-women comedy group in Pakistan, The Khawatoons. The panel discussion centred around liberating women through empowerment and building support systems. It comprised women discussing the main topic given their vast range of expertise and personal experiences.
The participants included Pakistani fashion designer, Huma Adnan, who works with refugee artisans, Tahira Hasan, founder and Director of Imkaan Welfare Organisation and the founder of Karachi Adoption Resource Centre (KARC), Saira Saigol, owner of Zerritta Flowers also shared the stage along with Mantahaa Tareen, pioneer of Zumba in Pakistan, a renowned fitness, lifestyle wellbeing trainer. Saman Hayat Soomro, renowned travel and lifestyle influencer and Umber T. Ansari, Head of Corporate Communications Engro Corporation added value to the panel and online discussion centred around women empowerment.
One of the first questions raised was: “What does empowerment look like for the women at home?”
To this Saira Saigol replied that “…I don’t think women at home are not empowered. It’s not easy to run a home.” Adding to this, Mantaha Tareen said, “Women being at home contribute to not just the society but also the economy. They bring children into the world. If she doesn’t earn money herself, she saves. And every penny saved is a penny earned.”
Another question that was discussed was: “How can we become a support system for the women around us?”
Huma Adnan added to this saying,”…Every woman needs to become sustainable to be empowered. I try to empower refugees that live in Pakistan in collaboration with UNHCR and I help them become something.”
Mantaha said that she helped women create their own businesses, encouraging them to take responsibilities for their lives. Tahira Hasan pointed out that the participants come from a place of privilege and that “we are not aware of the struggles women face. It is they who have the ability to inspire millions.” Upon being questioned how she believed every other woman could empower others she said, “It’s about compassion and becoming more helpful in just everyday interactions with women.”
The panel raised relevant queries and corrected each other as well to understand the struggles of women beyond our bubble of privilege. It was comforting to see Dolmen provide a space for women to be open to learning and debating about empowerment and women’s rights. It’s also great to see how other women use their platforms to create better lives for others.
Along with hosting the Power Talk, Dolmen has also hosted numerous women-centric activities throughout this weekend, makeovers and product testing by major local and international brands such as Garnier, Almirah, Maybelline, Makeup City, Bind Chocolates and more.