“When I was 12, I escaped a traumatic abuse that left a great mark in my soul, I was scarred for life; psychologically and emotionally. I was exposed to a lot of negativity that was life-changing. I suffered abuse by a family friend, I was exposed to situations which made me very vulnerable and I was always faced with tough decisions all through my teenage years.
Facing all of these, and reporting to my parents, my guardians and older people (men and women alike), all I got were lectures – always cover your head, always wear big clothes to cover your body, do not play with boys. They were good lessons I held on to, but then, nothing or very little was done about the boys and men who molest and abuse women.
All of these put together pushed me into a state of depression and confinement, with no one to talk to. Those times, drawing was my only means of escaping from worries and depressing thoughts. From then, I began to have more and more interest in becoming an artist and sharing my thoughts through my drawings.
While growing up, I discovered my love for drawing and I thought to pursue it professionally. I got a lot of backlash on the drawings I made as a lot of comments were focused on who was actually making the drawings. Most people never believed a girl could be talented enough to make beautiful drawings. Most people did not believe in a young girl having such talent, they felt it was for boys alone.
This dissuaded me from developing my talent because not many people believed in what I could do. I still get such comments today such as, ‘You made this drawing?’ ‘You, a girl?’ ‘I can’t believe a woman made this!’ ‘How is this possible?’ ‘You are a girl!’ It is disheartening and demeaning to me that these still happen in our age and time
I advocate for Gender Equality which is giving the same rights, status and opportunities regardless of one’s gender or sex. Let us give our girls and women the same opportunity given to men to thrive and excel in every aspect of life. I believe the world will be better if men and women all have equal rights.” – Tosin Akingba
About Tosin Akingba
What is #UnbowedVoices?
Read more about the campaign here: #UnbowedVoices – An Orifunke Lawal Campaign.