FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – A Fort St. John woman has been featured in the Nobel Women Initiative along with other women worldwide.
“There were 7 women who previously won the Nobel Prize so this started the Nobel Women Initiative in order to highlight different work being done around the world by women.”
December 10th is International Human Rights Day so from now until then, once a day, they will be featuring 16 Women from across the world that are involved in different efforts at addressing gender based violence.
Helen Knott found out she was nominated from a professor she knows at Emily Carr.
She is involved with helping to try and stop the Site C Dam.
“That involvement started about 6 years ago when I did a Indigenous Youth Grassroots Camp.”
Knott also travelled with the Treaty 8 Caravan across Canada recently in opposition of the Site C Dam.
“It was I think, intense because you are either on the bus or out in community mode and we spoke to a lot of different people in that period. It was really good though because it showed that we are tucked into the northeast corner, but we are not alone. There are people that stand with us.”
She hopes that the Site C Dam can be stopped. But there are also other outcomes she hopes can be reached through the work she does.
“Definitely that the dam is stopped. I think another portion of that is looking at how projects are approved, through the Environmental Assessment Process and also looking at a gender based analysis.”
Knott is currently working on her Masters Degree and would like to aim her thesis at the topic.
“I’m in my Masters Program right now and I’m working on targeting my thesis within that area, the relationship between violence against Indigenous lands and violence against Indigenous Women. I want to be able to have more research and academic writing that is based on that.”
She is also being featured by another institute for the 16 days leading up to International Human Rights Day.
“I guess I always feel like there is more work to be done. It feels like a piece in the process. I’ve been thinking ‘I should probably take a moment to celebrate these things that happen’ because I’m usually just so busy that I’m not able to process everything fully.”
Other women that are featured are from areas like Honduras, Colombia, South Sudan, Iran, Mexico, U.S., Syria, Israel, Croatia, Thailand and Tibet among others.
She says it is an honour to be named alongside other women doing the work.
“I don’t think I’ve even been able to wrap my head around that yet because I know there is a lot of amazing women doing really great work out there so it is kind of surprising at the same time. I usually just keep my nose to the grindstone and do what I need to do and not really notice how many people might witness that and see how valid and valuable my work is.”
Knott became emotional once hearing she was nominated and approached for an interview.
“When I knew that I was nominated and they wanted to initiate the interview process, I cried because there was so much growth in my life and I feel really humbled by it.”
To view Helen’s full interview with the Nobel Women Initiative, visit: http://nobelwomensinitiative.org/meet-helen-knott-canada/