We are all Laila

SDG 5: Gender equality
  • Year: 2010
  • Award: WSA Young Innovators
  • Category: Young Innovators
  • Producer: Eman Abd El-Rahman
  • Country: Egypt

Kolena Laila (We are all Laila) is an online, independent, non-profit initiative to empower women in the Arab world. It aims to motivate females to speak up and express their social frustrations using any language or form of expression they feel comfortable with, while also welcoming men to take part in the conversations. Participation is open to anybody from Egypt and Arab countries who wants to voice and share their experiences freely on the Internet. The title “Laila” was inspired by the name of the heroine of the novel "The Open Door", by Egyptian novelist Latifa El-Zayyat. In the novel, Laila represents every girl who suffers oppression and injustice in an eastern society. Thus, Laila is chosen as a symbol for each and every woman, trying to mould her independent personality in an oppressive society. Using the platform they can also review obsolete values and traditional ideas related to females, and discuss how society enacts them with no consideration of their impact on women.