Joya Taft-Dick

Joya Taft-Dick (Vital Voices - Africa Businesswomen’s Network, ABWN): Joya was born in Vermont and spent much of her youth on the move with her father – a UN official – in Africa and South Asia. After graduating from Middlebury College in 2006, she spent a year working in Colombo, Sri Lanka with a local women’s group and public health organizations. Joya then moved to Washington D.C where she spent two years working with a Congressional Commission on sexual violence in U.S prisons and jails. At the time of her fellowship, Joya was pursuing her Master’s degree at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. After her fellowship, Joya wrote: “Being around my colleagues and CBWN’s members was truly inspiring. The fellowship reminded me that I can operate very independently, that I am truly adaptable, and that I am happiest ‘in the field.’ I leave Cameroon with some rediscovered 'joie de vivre’.”

Preparing for Departure

27 May

The journey begins on an eleven hour train from Bellows Falls Vermont to Washington D.C, where The Advocacy Project (AP) is leading a three day training.  I am eager to meet the other Peace Fellows and finally put faces to the AP individuals I have been emailing the past few months!

Apart from the training, my initial tasks will involve, first and foremost, securing a visa to Cameroon.  Fingers are crossed that the process will be as painless as obtaining a visa can be; ‘on va voir’, or we will see.  I plan to attend a Vital Voices organized meeting on June 7th, also in D.C., where I will be further familiarized with the work of their organization, and their goals for the Cameroon Hub in particular.

Having the opportunity to conduct a baseline survey, as developed by Vital Voices, of the Cameroon Business Women Network participants is something I am very much looking forward to – engaging with these women and learning what obstacles they face in their daily lives, as well as what they have overcome and achieved, will not only be helpful for the network itself, but elucidating on a personal and professional level.  I am interested in knowing more about how women are resilient, and eager to depict them in their resilience, as opposed to the image of ‘victimhood’ women are so often portrayed in.  I imagine this summer will be more than a learning experience for me; I look forward to the stories of inspiration and hard work that I will undoubtedly encounter.

Posted By Joya Taft-Dick

Posted May 27th, 2010


  • Tereza Bottman

    May 27, 2010


    “I am interested in knowing more about how women are resilient, and eager to depict them in their resilience, as opposed to the image of ‘victimhood.'” – YES! Very important. All the best this summer!

  • Lassie nass

    June 11, 2010


    This is a post that i think has a worth to be commented.Thanks for the information.It is very useful.

  • Christine Marie Carlson

    June 14, 2010


    Bon Chance! Vous allez reusir, j’en suis sure!

  • Gregory Despain

    June 21, 2010


    interesting article ! thank very much.

  • Debba Robinson

    June 22, 2010


    Joya! This is exciting. I’m thrilled that you are having the opportunity to delve into your passions. Best of luck to you – I’ll follow your journey, for sure!

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