Mukhtar Mai & Katie Piper

Two Butterflies and the world

Aug 09 2013
By: Roxy
Categories: Mukhtar Mai & Katie Piper
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A butterfly has to spend time in the glow of sunlight to survive through a day.

On Saturday a beautiful butterfly flew into the bathroom through the open window and when I tried to shew it out again it wouldn’t go. It continued to fly around the house moving from room to room and we tried to move it outside with no success. It slowly died which upset me because a butterfly is not meant to be kept indoors, captured and trapped. A butterfly is meant to be free and live in the sunlight.
Some women are like beautiful butterflies needing to be released. Free of the control and power of men. Two such women are Mukhtar Mai and Katie Piper. They have flown free out of situations that could easily have entrapped them for life. Both have immense courage to fight and continue to live even when life is painful and others want to put shame on them. But not only to live themselves but to help others live. They live a world apart but have the same courage and conviction that life shouldn’t be this way and determination to change the worlds they live in.


Mukhtar Mai was raped by a group of men in her village where men decide on the punishment for shame. Shame that didn’t belong to Mukhtar in the first place but because she is a woman was put on her. More awful than that they tried to take her dignity and honour from her in the most humiliating way. She decided that even after rape she would free herself with the help of others, she would empower herself and she would empower other women to be given choices so they could no longer be controlled. She built a school so she and others could learn to read and write and so girls in Pakistan could be empowered to fight the system that tries to keep them trapped.
Katie Piper was assaulted by her boyfriend and then he sent someone else to attack her with acid. His aim to destroy a beautiful young lady and her life. She has fought back with love for others who have been affected by disfigurement and acid attacks. She has set up a foundation to raise awareness and change attitudes to disfigurement which has given hope to many.
Both Mukhtar and Katie were encouraged by their families and men in their lives who believed they could survive and make a difference. Mukhtar Mai was supported by her father who believed in her fight for justice and Katie Piper was helped by the surgeon who has worked to restore her face. Their faith in God, their belief in another way, their hope and their healing has driven them both forward to help others.
Both these women inspire me to work for change in attitudes towards women in our society. Their stories are among the many that remind me that I can’t sit back and allow domestic violence to continue. They inspire me to continue to believe that it’s possible to change attitudes and therefore prevent domestic violence.

A butterfly has to spend time in the glow of sunlight to survive through a day.

We at The Dwell Project believe men and women need to work together to prevent these and other forms of domestic violence from happening. We believe we can all influence change by treating each other with love and encouraging each other to be the people we are created to be.
We believe we can influence change by saying no to domestic violence, by supporting men who stand against domestic violence, by seeing women in our own lives as equally valuable. Join us in standing against domestic violence!!!
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