by Seyi Akiwowo, West Ham Women’s Officer
I was recently elected as Women’s Officer for West Ham CLP and promised to do a number of things. One promise was to do my best to encourage women to meet and build relationships with each other. A month into the post and it was time to act on my pledges (eek!). With the support of the lovely ladies we created history in West Ham- a Women’s get together!
Two weeks ago 15 West Ham women, young and older, representing all wards in the CLP and ethnic backgrounds came together for the first time to eat (and eat and eat-there was loads of food), drink, chill and plan! It was lovely to meet and welcome new members that have never been to a local labour party meeting. I heard from and learnt more about the comrades I sit next to every month at General Committee and branch meetings and canvass with on the doorstep.
A spirit of sister solidarity was clearly evident in Lyn’s living room. We found out we have a lot more in common then our political ideology and where we live and it is this that has contributed to the foundations for our new Women’s Forum- relationship. It is vital that we do more to create new environments for our members to meet and discuss. After only one meeting we can see the fruit of this new sisterhood. One lady told me she felt more confident to speak out at meetings others have told me they now want to do more for the local party and community. Also in that living room we decided to put our talents and passion together to organise and host a huge International Women’s Day in March next year.
This is evidence to not only why we need a sisterhood in West Ham CLP but it illustrates the power of our sisterhood and what we can and will achieve. I am excited to be a part of this evolution and lead a team of strong women.