SPEAK OUT: Khadija Gbla
Differences in culture and background are simply that – differences. Not better or worse, simply different.
Khadija Gbla is a cultural consultant and peer educator with unmatched ability to bridge the difference. Khadija provides advocacy, training, speaking on domestic and family violence, sexual health, racism, human rights, mental health, migrants and refugees and cultural diversity. Through her work, Khadija encourages people to challenge their understandings of the world around them, and to question the uncritical acceptance of stereotypes and assumptions that are made about unfamiliar cultures.
Born in Sierra Leone, Khadija Gbla spent her youth in Gambia before putting down roots in Australia. Now Executive Director of No FGM Australia, she advocates for protection and support for women and girls living with or at risk of female genital mutilation (FGM). Khadija is also the co-founder The Desert Flower Centre Australia, the first centre in Asian Pacific region that specialises in providing holistic, comprehensive gynaecological, urological reconstructive surgery and trauma informed care for women impacted by female genital mutilation. The centre also provides training for professionals, advocacy and community education for practicing communities in Australia.
This is the first edition of Speak Out, a new content series produced as part of the Be A Better Human initiative at UNSW. In this series, we talk to people who courageously share their personal experiences with racism, discrimination, harassment and bullying; sharing how they have been impacted and what they’ve learnt from it. We hope these stories will help the UNSW community to understand how we can better support our classmates, colleagues, friends and fellow community members by being an active bystander and safely providing support to those being impacted.
The Be A Better Human initiative is a joint partnership between UNSW and Arc@UNSW.