–Prepared by the WE-Change team, March 14, 2016–
On the evening of Thursday, March 10, 2016 Women’s Empowerment for Change (WE-Change) hosted #HerLegacy to honour and celebrate inspiring women in families, communities, Jamaica and the Caribbean. The event was well supported by a cross-generational audience of individuals and NGOs. WE-Change is an avid social media user and tries at all times to include social media engagement as a component of everything WE do. The following is a qualitative report of the #HerLegacy online engagement on Twitter and Facebook during and after the event.
Jamaica AIDS Support for Life, Transwave, EVE for Life, JYAN, J-FLAG, UWI MUN and 360 Artists were some of the top entities that engaged folks about #HerLegacy on Twitter. They all gave very positive feedback on the quality of the production both in terms of the physical space and the content of the programme.
WE-Change and #HerLegacy also had the support of a number of key influencers on Twitter. Dr. Marcia Forbes, Jean Lowrie Chin, Imani Duncan Price, Emma Lewis and Carla Moore were among the top influencers tweeting about the event. This contributed to #HerLegacy tweets being delivered to over one million timelines, with a total (reach) audience of approximately 140,000 Twitter users. Social media users pay attention to content because of its quality, and they also pay attention based on who is posting the content. Twitter influencers are not only considered influential on social media but the nature of their work also makes them public figures, and influencers on the ground. WE-Change benefitted tremendously from this.
At the time of preparing this report (March 14, 2016), a total of 807 tweets were recorded with 110 persons tweeting.
A lot of the conversation around #HerLegacy was about the tribute Imani Duncan Price gave to her late mother, Grace Duncan. Both Imani and her mother are public figures so the fact that she was able to share intimate details about her life in such a public space had meaning to several persons. Content from Imani’s tribute to her mom received the largest number of interactions and accounted for a significant number of tweets posted by users. Imani’s idea of ‘grounding one’s self in irrational hope’ resonated with several persons in the audience and online. The impact of Imani’s tribute was best captured in this succinct tweet by @E2_EST:
Twitter users kept their followers updated from the beginning to the end of the programme. They tweeted about all items on the #HerLegacy programme, some of which highlighted users’ favourite picks. The feedback received was positive on all fronts. One can glean from the social media interactions that #HerLegacy was inspirational, impactful, tear-jerking and certainly a safe space. Performances in song and spoken word were well received. Quite a number of persons tweeted about the vocal prowess of Anna Mariah and the depth and impact of the pieces delivered by spoken word artist Taitu Heron.
Based on the level of interaction on Twitter about the performances, Taitu’s Libation Poem For Women seemed to have been a favourite of the evening.
Social media users also congratulated the organizers of the event especially the Associate Director Latoya Nugent, on the quality, depth, and breadth of the event. Some persons added that they expected nothing less from the team, which speaks to the growing confidence in this very young organization. The sentiments, especially those following the event were very similar. Persons were very satisfied with the substance and quality of the event, many of who shared very emotional posts following the event on Thursday evening and on Friday.
WE-Change is very grateful to UN Women Caribbean and J-FLAG for funding this initiative, and we are doubly grateful for the wide cross-section of organisations and gender advocates who continue to support our work. WE-Change is committed to facilitating the empowerment of lesbians, bisexual and transgender women and to ensure that these women make significant contributions to the women’s movement in Jamaica, and the social justice movement within the region. WE are also committed to (re)framing the narrative about LBT women; WE want you to see us as human beings, as women, who can do great things and contribute to making Jamaica a safe, just, and cohesive society for all. Jherane Patmore said it best when she tweeted:
At the end of the event @TrendsJamaica tweeted that #HerLegacy was trending [on Twitter] in Jamaica. Up to the 13th of March, persons were still tweeting about #HerLegacy!
Below is a table of the top 5 Twitter users who tweeted about #HerLegacy, ranked by their total number of followers. Two of the users (Carla Moore & Emma Lewis) listed here were not present at the event, but engaged persons who were tweeting about the event; they were also #HerLegacy Honourees. These five women are leaders in business, media, politics, and academia.
|Name||Twitter Handle||# of Followers|
|Dr. Marcia Forbes||@marciaforbes||12,668|
|Jean Lowrie Chin||@souldancing||8,350|
|Imani Duncan Price||@imani_dp||4,927|
Here’s a sample of what folks were saying on Twitter about #HerLegacy.
@jaevionn: Packed room at #HerLegacy
@Imani_dp: Was such an honour to be a part of @WEChangeJA #HerLegacy paying tribute to my mother #rebelwoman of #IrrationalHope
@souldancing: @WEChangeJA… Thank you.. stirring event.. especially tributes to #Mothers from #JudithWedderburn and @imani_livetruth.. #HerLegacy
@KenishiaMais: Loving the quality of presentations at #HerLegacy. Great job, @WEChangeJA!
@CheesePatty_: Was truly touched and re-inspired to work harder for our rights. #HerLegacy
@AwthentikAbby: No matter what happens in life you can make the best of it…. Let no one define for us what is normal…’ @imani_dp
@Dexx_Rose: I am really proud of @WEChangeJA and the team. #wechanging #HerLegacy
@CheesePatty_: Due to how a choir ministry a gwaan in yah cause dis NOICE. Mi feel it inna mi spirit #HerLegacy
@trans_wave: Something beautiful is happening here at @WEChangeJA’s #HerLegacy
@GlenDivo: Battery Dying but I am loving the atmosphere of #HerLegacy
@JASLtweets: #HerLegacy was an amazing event. From one woman-led organisation to the other, job well done @WEChangeJA #TogetherWeCan
Here’s a sample of what folks were saying on Facebook about #HerLegacy.
Elton El Mika Mac: Always anticipate the quality and production of any event touched or blessed by Lucy Nugent she works very hard #inspired and #proud.
Adwoa Onuora: What a lovely night of sharing in sisterhood with some amazing women. Thanks to the WE-Change team and UN Women for putting on such an “awesome” event to quote Owen Blakka Ellis
Christina Grant: Last night as we celebrated and remembered the works of those who’ve paved and continue to pave the way for gender equality, I was humbled and empowered to be in the presence of such female legends….. it was a lovely and powerful evening in the company of a fraction of the persons who seek to achieve gender parity. Thank you WE-Change Lucy Nugent Alexia McFee Nicolette Bryan #HerLegacy #GenderParity
Marcia Forbes: Thanks LiveStush for snapping this [photo] at WE-Change event. I also thank the organizers for a beautiful evening of reflections, music & poetry and for including me among those worthy of recognition #IWD2016.
Marcia Forbes: Thanks to WE-Change, a small group of progressive and hard-working women, for including me among those worthy of being highlighted & honoured at their #IWD celebratory event.
Marcia Forbes: The event last night was so awe-inspiring. My brother-in-law who is a Ph.D. Engineer, living abroad for past 40 years, was totally touched and impressed. You are all awesome women.
Imani Duncan Price: Thank you #WE-Change and everyone who made this a meeting of #powHERful minds and spirits.
Nadeen Spence: Tonight Lucy Nugent and Alexia McFee, the women of WE-Change, made me feel like a Goddess…I have no words except to say women like you who make other women tall, were sent from Heaven on big horses drawing chariots of diamond and gold and you are magnificent and beautiful and when you walk into a room you change it and when you write, the words catch fire, and your words are like water, they move stuff…like mountains or self doubt..out of the minds of women.
Taitu Heron: My heart is so full of love, joy and sheer admiration. FB cyan hol it…Feel like we still need to celebrate.
Carla Petite: Tonight I was inspired, I felt proud, I felt bubbly inside…I felt a ray of hope (cliche as it sounds). I was touched by women sharing their stories and proud black women paying tribute to other proud black women. There were moments when I was happy, moments when I was sad, moments when I just felt blessed. Thanks to WE-Change, Lucy Nugent, Nadeen Althia Spence, Rushell Ferarah, Imani Duncan-Price This event #HerLegacy will be a treasured memory.
Kenishia S. Mais: Her [Taitu Heron] performance of her poem “I am… Who Mi Name?” was AMAAAZING. Like, earth-shattering, tears inducing amazing. Thankful to WE-Change for putting on such an incredible event. #WomensWeek #EmpowHERed