Lena is a 3rd year student taking an LLB in English and French Law. She is the founder of a very inspirational instagram page (@coffeeandzealousgirls) which is centered on women empowerment! She kindly allowed us to interview her to find out more about herself and her jourmey.
1. Please introduce yourself!
Hello I’m Lena! I am passionate by people, languages, I am an avid knitter and a survivor. I am now in my 3rd year of my LLB in English Law and French Law between King’s College London and Pantheon-Assas in Paris. I am fully french but recently I’ve been told I have an accent when I speak French. Therefore, I will from now on be explaining that I am French-American to simplify the long explanation on where my interesting accent comes from! Moving over 10 times to 3 different continents makes it hard to have one specific accent!!
2. Please share more about your instagram page and why you decided to start it.
I run an instagram page called “Coffee and Zealous Girls”.
I do not like to refer to it as my project because it really is a community. This project aims to empower and spread compassion. At its core is the empowering of women. I understand the term “women” as including anyone who wishes to be included. Every Monday, I present a woman I know who inspires me, in the hope that everyone can take away something from the answers.
In the summer of 2017, I was left traumatised after several incidents with an older man I was working with. In September of that year, I became very depressed and had an extremely hard time coping with what had happened and its consequences. From this dark place blossomed the idea to create the page.
I feel like we are all fascinated and inspired by “famous” strong women, however I never felt like I could truly connect to them. I felt like these amazing women were just in a higher league than me. I decided to create the page to prove and express that every single one of us is powerful and inspiring in our own ways. You don’t need to be famous and “beautiful” to have a voice and bring about change. You are simply everything there is to be.
3. What do you think you’ve learned about women empowerment along the way?
What started as a project to empower women has blossomed far beyond its original scope. I realised the topic of women empowerment really cannot be separated from a variety of topics such as mental health, sexuality, and culture!
4. Why do you think women empowerment is important?
I can not understand how it would be unimportant. The idea of having one gender below others boggles me.
I think cooperation is important in the fight for women empowerment. Too often this movement is seen as a women vs men issue. This confrontation will never lead anywhere. It’s only together, person to person, that we will be able to overcome struggles as a society.
5. Share some ideas you have of how students can get involved in the empowerment movement.
I feel like very often big movements and starting a change in society frightens people. They feel like a tiny pebble lost on a long beach of sand. Yet, every pebble is important and can make a difference!! Changes in society and in mentalities are only the product of tiny baby steps by all the tiny pebbles of this world.
Women empowerment starts with empowering yourself and those around you. Love yourself and your flaws a little more today! Reach out to the last person you talked to or texted and ask them how they are doing and if you can help them with anything in any way! Before you know it, you’ll be running your own empowerment page…
Thank you very much to King’s College London’s Women in Law Society for allowing me to share something I am very passionate about. Can’t wait to hear all about your stories on Coffee and Zealous Girls!