Women Wednesday #36


We love how women are changing the world and making an impact to their home countries that we're talking all things awesome and new every Wednesday!

USA flag
marathon runner
​(Mike Novak / Washington Post)

The petite lady in the red lipstick, undeterred by her latest cancer treatments, was back on the starting line Sunday in the Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathon. This year, the goal for Harriette Thompson was to become the oldest woman to complete a half-marathon, two years after she became the oldest woman to finish a marathon in San Diego. She’s 94 — and she did it. She really did it, cranking out the 13.1 miles at a pace of just over 17 minutes per mile and finishing in an unofficial time of 3 hours, 42 minutes and 56 seconds. Thompson, who took up running when she was 76 and decided “I can walk a marathon,” is also motivated by the knowledge that her efforts have raised over $100,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. This year her effort has raised $15,000. An incredibly inspiring woman who could no doubt walk 500 miles with her amazingly positive attitude never faltering once.

Palestine flagPALESTINE

(Mohamed Harb  / Al Jazeera)

Madeleine Kolab always had a strong relationship with the sea. She grew up swimming and helping her father in the family's fishing business, while dreaming of a career as fashion designer. But the life of the Gazan teenager changed dramatically when her father was no longer able to continue his work. Madeleine is 22 now but she took over the family fishing business at the age of 13, becoming Gaza's first fisherwoman. She had to survive as a young woman in an exclusively man's world at a raw age and deal with regular gender discrimination in her own conservative community. A fellow fishermen remembers Madeleine going to sea as a child. "She would dive from the rock," says Mohamed Omar Bakir. "Now she's more skilled than any fisherman. At first, they gave her weird looks. But because she works hard and shows them respect they look at her with admiration now." We’re also looking at her with immense admiration, what a wonderful, strong girl.

Indonesia FlagINDONESIA

Heavy metal girl band

(Rony Zakaria / The Guardian)


It was a dull day in music class that ignited a rebellion in three Indonesian teenage girls. Poring over their school teacher’s music collection, the hijab-wearing schoolgirls from conservative West Java discovered a trove of heavy metal. “I just fell in love with metal since that first time I heard it. It felt so rebellious,” said 16-year-old Firdda Kurnia. “I think we found ourselves in the music.” Kurnia is vocalist and guitarist of Voice of Baceprot, the metal group she formed in 2014 with drummer Eusi Siti Aisyah and bassist Widi Rahmawati. The band is now blasting its way into the Asian music scene, causing consternation among more conservative peers and bringing the three young women hate mail and worse. The girls of VoB know they are different and they don’t care. Up against a double whammy of gender and religion, challenging stereotypes is something they are taking in their stride. “I think what we want to say to the young women of Indonesia is, don’t be afraid of being different,” said Kurnia. “Don’t be afraid to shout your independence.” Aren’t they the COOLEST?!

Have a positive week,

Love Neon Moon x  


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Hayat - CEO & Founder, Neon Moon