Experts Column

KoolKanya guides women in connecting with each other and grow together in a digital platform.

Currently a community of 25K+ members and growing every day, with a reach of over a million, KoolKanya is a safe space for women to network professionally, exchange opportunities, share opinions and ask questions. The platform also offers career guidance, mentorship and opportunities for women to help them build careers they love and want to explore....

While online platforms and communities across the globe have been developing for two decades with a lot of literature and experts on both, there is relatively lesser shared knowledge on the importance of communities for women. Women-only networks across the world are a fairly recent phenomenon but have been met with significant applause.

With minuscule representation on a global scale historically, women across the world have finally united and come into their own to instigate more conversations around the life experiences of women. Now, more people are talking about how it’s high time women’s voices are heard.

Additionally, prevalent gender disparity on networking sites has further pushed women to start their own communities and give rise to a budding ecosystem.

These communities have been instrumental in encouraging women to rise above societal notions and propagate the message of unity across the spectrum. With an aim to empower each other, women can strongly benefit through a shared presence on these platforms and bring about positive change at large.

Some ways women communities help empower women:

1. Providing A Safe, Judgement-Free Space

The world wide web has been a very convenient place for women to be targeted and bullied as the anonymity and the lack of stringent cyber laws have made it easy for bullies and abusers to get away with their abuse. This has led to a large number of women being wary of online platforms that don’t promise safety.

For decades, non-binary and trans women have struggled to find a place to express their identities and be accepted. On online female-centric platforms, people who identify as women can find a safe space and a voice-which has often been denied to them.

“The slow and unsubtle conditioning over centuries has given rise to a patriarchal discourse that disregards the unheard voices of women across centuries, spanning the globe”

Within female-centric communities, women find it easier to share openly and bond better because they feel that there is more empathy on these platforms. It also becomes easier to access answers to common issues, relevant information, authentic exchanges, support, as well as easier acceptance of vulnerability.

2. Seamless Personal Or Professional Navigation

A lot of times, navigating between the discussion of personal and professional lives becomes difficult on social media-especially for women. Being a part of an online women-centric community can also work as a great way to share both personal and professional experiences. Professionally, it helps to be able to have a platform to discuss common issues and understand that other women also go through certain disparities at the workplace, such as wage differences, sexism, and gender biases.

The best guidance mostly comes from someone who has already experienced what you are going through and online communities help in that crucial exchange of information. These platforms also encourage the discussion of personal issues like health concerns, familial issues, and more-and women in the community help each other by sharing the knowledge they have gained through experiences. Women-centric communities foster empathy while also creating a robust support system in more ways than one.

3. Hear And Be Heard

The glaring lack of authentic voice and representation of women in media and culture has been strongly condemned, giving rise to the need for stories about women, by women.

The slow and unsubtle conditioning over centuries has given rise to a patriarchal discourse that disregards the unheard voices of women across centuries, spanning the globe. From the suffragette movement to the slow rise in boardroom participation by women today, the journey has been long and arduous. Women throughout history have fought long and hard to be able to disregard convention and speak up for themselves without censorship. Women-centric communities are created with this thought and are meant to be places where women can freely take the center stage and speak their minds. Apart from being heard yourself, it’s also important to be able to hear other women, and this makes women-centric online communities an empowering platform.

4. Networking And Opportunities

Networking is crucial, especially in this day and age, as important professional relationships must be cultivated and valued. With women finally moving towards equal representation in the workplace, new opportunities are sprouting up for female professionals and business owners to climb up the corporate or entrepreneurial ladder.

Online communities dedicated to women are committed and work wholeheartedly to ensure representation of women across levels and are consciously working on understanding how to address the challenges that are holding women back from being at the top of the economic chain.

Communities, ranging from alumni networks of specific universities to professional platforms like KoolKanya, all work as excellent networking platforms, providing guidance, mental health support, career advice, and opportunities for each other.

5. Mutual Empowerment & Upliftment

With society largely looking to turn women against each other, women must remember that they have to be each other’s biggest cheerleaders. For the longest time, sexist forces and dated literature have propagated jealousy and hatred between women but feminist icons have tried to squash those claims by promoting and encouraging a culture of mutual empowerment amongst women.

Women-centric communities work actively at encouraging the sharing of personal stories and journeys. These help the community realize how we can stand up for each other and understand the value we provide to society. Women are allowed vulnerability and it can be very empowering to lay yourself bare without negative responses!

Women-based platforms and communities can be monumental in changing the lives of women. The existence of safe and encouraging spaces for women is very important. This is a place where they can be unabashed, dream big, make important decisions, and have an ecosystem ready to pick them up and propel them forward if they ever stumble.