gender stereotypes

A 16 Year Old Firefighters Journey to Self Confidence

Author and Firefighter

Ali Warren

When Ali Warren discovered firefighting, she thought she had found her life’s work. But other firefighters had different ideas. She had to gain self-confidence to overcome the prejudice against the one thing she could not change, being a girl. Ali told her classic story of empowerment in her book, Where Hope Lives.

Empowering Women to Help People

Ali’s passion is to help people. Firefighting is the perfect outlet for helping people when they need it most. But while she was seeing people and children after horrendous accidents, learning how to cut apart a car and perform CPR, she was also learning a life lesson about how cruel people can be to their co-workers.
In this interview Ali tells Dr. Nancy that she relied on three things:

  • First, she had been raised to know and have confidence in her beliefs about who and what she was. That solid foundation allowed her to stand up to things that didn’t fit her values.
  • Second, she had the love and support of her family. They believed in something bigger and were in her court, cheering her on every day.
  • Third was her journaling. From a young age, she had written her life experiences. By the end of her ordeal, she had 31 journals, which had become more than a record, they were her salvation and her means to understand the reasons behind the obstacles that threatened her career.

Empowering Story is Helping Students.

Memoir by Ali WarrenAli’s story has turned into lesson plans to help high school students. When a Pennsylvania literacy coach asked her students to ready it, they not only read the first book in their lives, they asked to study its messages through the next semester. It has now become a professional series of lesson plans to help teenagers learn how to deal with difficulties in their lives: their homes and environments. Ali confronted issues that no one of any age should have to deal with and in doing so, she showed others how to face and conquer their own struggles.

Motivational Story a Good Book for Women

When people first told Ali she couldn’t be a firefighter, she wondered, “Can I choose this? Can I just say I want to be a firefighter and be one?” It was a long road, but the best of her motivational quotes for women is that we are all enough. In fact there is only one of each of us and it is our duty not to waste it. Share your talent and be happy with yourself. It is your greatest gift and when you realize it, you really can make a difference I the world.
Listen to this interview for more wisdom and be sure to read her book to find out Where Hope Lives and share its motivational message.

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Avoid gender stereotypes in Halloween costumes

What kind of Halloween costumes will you put on your kids this year?

bunch of grapes halloween costumeWhat will you wear yourself? What messages will these costumes say about girls and women’s roles, and about men’s relationships to women?

It’s worth thinking about! is a growing movement to change the way women and portrayed in the media and in society.
Our girls deserve a fair chance to view themselves as something other than sexy kittens while young boys are pushed towards hyper-masculinity and aggression.

Halloween costumes for women depict sexy stereotypes

Adult costumes are just as bad! On the Halloween page features a “Sexy Costumes” section. There are only women’s costumes in this section. There’s a clear imbalance here: is Halloween now for girls to dress sexy for men? The way we adults approach this holiday has a direct effect on how our kids view it. And with more and more of us participating in Halloween each year, it becomes critically important for us to think about that effect.
This Halloween I urge you to consider carefully how you dress yourself and your young ones. has started a campaign to collect positive and non-gendered Halloween costumes online. Post pictures or videos of your outfits on their Tumblr page and leave a sentence about why you chose it! Together we can start new trends and make Halloween a little less disconcerting for parents.

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