I love discovering talented, brave and fierce Kurdish young girls who are passionate about their homeland and how they work towards making a change for gender equality in our male dominant society. You are very much appreciated and loved and will always have my support and respect, no matter where you are, know that you are not alone and that I stand with you. - Dashni
Read Alin’s beautiful and honest story here below, enjoy angels.
Hello, my name is Alin Saidali
I am 21 years old (turning 22 on November 14th) Kurdish woman living in Canada. I am currently enrolled in my 4th year of University to become an English and Geography teacher.
I never saw myself simply finishing university and finding a secure and safe job teaching children in Canada. I dreamt of my life in a place that kept my heart ever since visiting in 2011. I was dreaming of Kurdistan, the dream of being surrounded by the mountains, by the children running around playing soccer on the streets and by seeing my people thrive and succeed. My dream was to teach in Kurdistan, to teach the children of Kurdistan as the next generation. I try my best every day to pursue these dreams not only for me but for my parents who came to Canada in 1995 after escaping Saddam Hussein’s brutal attacks in Bashur. I have so many dreams that all end up with my love for my people, for my country, and for the fight of freedom. In May of this year, I decided to create a website where I could creatively write about things that were on my mind and the only thing that was on my mind was Kurdistan. I created a website called Kurdish Dream where I wrote about oral stories that my parents told me of how they escaped genocide and I wrote about Kurdistan and the need for Independence. Bringing the aspect of Kurdish fashion and the Kurdish community together allowed for a perfect audience. My overall dream is to help my country in any way possible, to never take my life for granted and be a leading example of never giving up on your dreams even if people think it’s too crazy to happen.
Throughout my life, I faced multiple hardships because of the fact I did not want to be placed in such a life that I did not create for myself or want for myself. I’ve had people ask me when am I going to get married assuming that my time is almost up and If I don’t marry before the age of 30 it's over for me. Unfortunately, I’ve had my own parents be pressured to try and restrict me because they fear that people in the Kurdish community would speak poorly about me. Some have laughed when I speak about my dreams and passions, some think I’m crazy when I tell them I want to live in Kurdistan to teach. My hardships have always come along with the stereotypes and assumptions people have about me based on my gender and my culture. The idea of finding a profession to go into so you could settle down, marry a man and have children as if it’s a checklist and needing to do one after another.
I’ve learned to deal with the criticism because I realized that what I am doing with my life to pursue my dreams and be independent is not what individuals see on a regular basis especially in the Kurdish community. I survive these struggles knowing that my country and my people have survived terrible things that I can never imagine and yet they still continue to lead and befriend the mountains. I will continue to survive so I can push the odds of what a stereotypical Kurdish woman is supposed to do and to be there to help my country through education and bringing awareness to my people.
The biggest advice I can give is to never listen to anyone who belittles your dreams and your passions, to continue to grow into an independent woman and make something beautiful out of yourself. To be the individual you choose to be not allowing the restrictions that you face based on your gender or even your culture destroy what you have because what you have is gold. Don’t ever underestimate your strength, you need to continue to fight so you can change the stereotypes people see in young woman by accomplishing what is in the purest spot in your heart because trust me everything will fall into place at the end.
I hope you felt a glimpse of motivation while reading and thank you Dashni for the amazing opportunity to speak about such an important subject. Supas bû hemîya, Bijî Kurd û Kurdistan.