Social media has been a curse and a blessing over the past couple of years. The accessibility it offers has revolutionized the way we communicate however it also creates the popularity of unfavorable influences on younger generations. As a girl growing, up I did not have the accessibility to a smart phone and mostly looked up to the people I had read about at school or watched in movies. Now, as times have evolved and social media has become more involved in everyday life younger generations are more exposed to Instagram stars and model. When talking to a family friend in third grade, I asked who she wanted to be like when she grew up. Her response was, "I want to be just like that model on Instagram with the eyebrows and lion on her hand". Don't get me wrong, Cara Delevingne is not a bad person by any means, but what happened to the role models we used to look up to? The United Nation's Women Ambassadors are famous women just like the ones on Instagram but they also have had a major impact on the world, these are the women I look up to, and these are the women who should be the role models of younger generations.
1. Nicole Kidman
Academy Award-winning actress by Day, United Nations Goodwill Women Ambassador by night. Nicole Kidman is most known for her film career, but most people don’t know that she has also dedicated her life to helping raise awareness for women’s rights as well. She was a leader of the Say NO-UNiTE to End Violence Against Women. Focusing her time on putting an end to violence against women, which can affect one out of every three women. Nicole Kidman has spoken about her time as an Ambassador and said, “ As the Goodwill Ambassador of UN Women, the United Nations’ organization working to empower women and girls, I have seen that there is no limit to what women can achieve when given the opportunity”.
2. HRH Princess Bajrakitiyabha Mahidol
Royal Princess of Thailand and dedicated humanitarian. Not only does she have a PhD in law from Cornell, but she is also Thailand’s Ambassador to Austria. Her royal title has not stopped her from reaching new heights and tackling the problem of violence against women in Thailand with the help of the United Nations. She also created a project in Thailand aimed at enhancing the lives of female inmates in prison. This improved the treatment of incarcerated women and set standards for pregnant inmates and their babies.
3. Emma Watson
Famously well known as Hermione Granger, Harry Potter's curly haired sidekick. Emma is my ultimate role model and has revolutionized the way millennials view feminism. She became an UN Women Goodwill Ambassador in July of 2014 and since then has made inconceivable strides in promoting gender equality. She has traveled the world and has been heavily involved with the promotion of girls education across the world. Emma is also known for her speech at the United Nations promoting gender equality and launching the HeForShe campaign. She opened the door to the gender gap and recognized the problems we still have today by inviting men to join the efforts to solve gender equality.
4. Anne Hathaway
Another award winning actress known to young girls everywhere as Mia Thermopolis. Anne just recently was appointed as UN Women Goodwill Ambassador in June 2016. She has focused her efforts on the issue of unequal burden of care and work in the home and as an advocate for affordable childcare services. She also was involved in the CNN documentary “Girl Rising” which gave an inside look into the lives of seven girls around the world and the obstacles they faced in pursuit of their dreams.
Who are these women? Yes, they are public figures. Yes, they have fame and fortune. But more importantly they are using their influence to better society and help combat some of the many problems we have today. These are the role models that girls should be admiring. These are the women who have done it right and are making a change.