“As a woman I understand beauty. I understand what beauty is outside of myself and inside of myself. I was influenced in the past by societal standards and trying to fit that certain mold. But there’s nothing more beautiful than knowing who you are. No matter what you are beautiful.” – Maya Valentine is studying to become a journalist.
“Many women don’t have the opportunity and privilege to live and work in the United States. I thank God that I am able to be here and help my family back in Guatemala. My life is blessed because I am a mother. I am working here so that my son has the opportunity to go to school so he can succeed and achieve his goals. His father died while I was pregnant with him and I wanted him to have opportunities, so I came here to the United States. My son has lived with my parents, his grandparents since he was 5 years old. I haven’t seen him since I left and I still think of him as my baby but he is 18. He is a young man now.” – Martha Lopez lives in Los Angeles and is employed cleaning houses.
“My first job was as a cocktail waitress for a catering hall. My boss only hired women because he said they were harder workers. But to be a cocktail waitress there you also had to be reasonably attractive. I made a lot of money as a teenager and I learned a lot about business. Even though his criteria was sexist, it did acknowledge that women are hard working and more responsible.” – Carol Marie Tuite is Cofounder of Franklin Street Policy Group.