Travel Log #11 “Holding up Half the Sky” By Andrew Rivera Barcelona, Spain

When reading “Half the Sky” by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn many concepts and ideas stuck out to me, but one in particular was above all of the rest. The one idea that really stuck with me was any help can make a huge difference. Especially when you read about all of the struggling women in the world. The book tells a story of the struggling women in Africa and Asia, that go through many hardships and experiences. With just a small amount of help they are able to make a huge difference. If I were to explain the message that the book was trying to reveal to their audience it would be that anything helps, and you can make a difference. Even the slightest bit of help makes a difference. One quote that I really enjoyed about making a difference was said by Sheryl WuDunn. She stated, “Our focus is on changing reality, not changing laws.” This was a great quote because laws sometimes take years to become a law and then are sometimes not even enforced. She doesn’t want to wait for something to come along, the time to help is now. People will always need help from today, to the end of time. She really wants to help under all circumstances, which is a great trait to have.

The one story that impacted me more than the rest was the Cambodian girl. This was awesome to ready about because she really started with absolutely nothing. The was a sex slave that was sold on the market, and had no idea how to get out of it. But eventually she was able to sneak away and received help. That help came from and aid group that was able to get her back to normal. Some of the emotions that were portrayed was scared, disgust, all negative words. But when she was able to find help and get back on her feet the emotions took a turn for the better. It was a beautiful site to see that she was able to start her own business. Some of the actions that was taken I would say are risks. Many of the decisions she made were risky but with big risk comes massive rewards and in the end she made the right decisions. Her thoughts were all over the place, not knowing if she will ever leave the brothel, and live a normal life. A scary story for many but a truly inspiring one when she was able to make something out of nothing.

My business studies would help me to try and donate money to causes that can help out the women that need it the most. Money is a huge part of any situation. From people on the street begging for money, people that are struggling living paycheck to paycheck, and rich people having money to spend on whatever they desire. Money is part of our everyday lives no matter who you are. Any money is what these struggling women need to survive. Without money you can’t do anything, and maybe one day when I am financially stable enough I can donate money to organizations that can really impact the struggling people all across the world.

Overall this book was really moving. Just like previous readings and films that we had to watch it was eye opening to see the struggling women, and all that they have went through. It really makes me want to make a difference, even if it means just taking a few hours a week to volunteer or try and make a difference. I think that everyone can make a difference to these hurting women that really need help.


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