Why We Cannot Keep Silent

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Women Speak Out for Rivers

How do women feel when their rivers are dammed, their forests and villages submerged? What are their main concerns when facing the huge social changes and trauma that these projects bring to their communities? What inspired them to resist large dams and join the movement against all odds? How can they build more strength into their struggles? Finally, we touched upon an issue most women struggle with: how much can we take on? How do we protect ourselves while taking on these difficult struggles? As women we are always making sacrifices, sometimes to the point that there is nothing left to give. But we need to save something for ourselves – an inner space of sanity. This is the only way we can keep on fighting until we get what we want for the world, because it is sure to be a long journey to get to that better world.

As the session closed with tears and hugs all around, we took great comfort from the realization that the rivers across the world are united through thousands of women like these – women with the sense and sensibility to understand that if rivers die, we all lose together.

The authors were co-organizers of the women’s session in Mexico.