Teen Mindset Magazine had the honor of interviewing Nadya Okamoto, the Founder and Executive Director of PERIOD (period.org), an organization fighting to end period poverty and stigma that she founded at the age of 16. Read the article below to learn more about Nadya!
Who is Nadya Okamoto?
Nadya Okamoto, who grew up in Portland, OR, is a 21-year-old Harvard student. PERIOD is now the largest youth-run NGO in women’s health, and one of the fastest growing ones here in the United States. Since 2014 they have addressed over 900,000 periods and registered over 600 campus chapters in all 50 states and 30 other countries. In 2017, Nadya ran for public office in Cambridge, MA at age 19 — becoming the youngest Asian American to run in US history. Nadya recently published her debut book, Period Power: A Manifesto for the Menstrual Movement with publisher Simon & Schuster, which made the Kirkus Reviews list for Best Young Adult Nonfiction of 2018. Nadya is the Chief Brand Officer of JUV Consulting, a Generation Z marketing agency based in NYC. She was recently named to the 2019 Forbes 30 under 30 and the Bloomberg 50 “Ones to Watch” list.
What advice do you have for youth who want to make a difference but do not know where to start?
“You really have to go for it. If there is something you want to do, do it! It doesn’t matter if you don’t know what you’re doing or you don’t have the resources. Find your people, find a mentor, and ask questions!”
Through your experience, what qualities are needed in order to to evoke true change in our world?
“I think that in order to make true change in the world, you have to be willing to take some big risks. If you’re doing something that hasn’t been done before, you’ll absolutely make people a little shocked and uncomfortable — but that’s a good thing sometimes! Get ready to put yourself out there, be unapologetic about your ambition, and if you’re feeling nervous about it, just keep reminding yourself about the bigger picture dream!”
I recommend that you get to know more about Nadya and the Period Movement through the links I have below. Her story, resilience, and accomplishments inspire me and will inspire you too! I am so thankful that she is brining awareness of the issue of period poverty because if I am being honest I was not that aware of the issue prior to this interview, which is why I even further appreciate what you are doing. Global problems like period poverty would continue without people like Nadya dedicating their time and talents towards spreading more awareness. This knowledge has forever made my viewers and I enlightened about the period poverty. I do not know about you all but I have been inspired to unite with the PERIOD Movement and makes menstrual products available to all women.
What other problems are going undetected in our world?
Let’s not take these various pieces of advice from leaders like Nadya for granted. Repeatedly I have heard from leaders that we must just go for it. Let’s together start accomplishing our dreams today and begin making a difference. Create that magazine you always wanted to create. Create the non-profit you want to own. Start fundraising for the problems you see in our world. Create that fashion company you dream of. Ask that leader for advice. We got this guys! At this moment we have over 70 followers who you can contact for advice, support, and inspiration.
One Day or Day One? It is Your Decision.
Get to know more about Nadya Okamoto and the PERIOD Movement:
- Speech at the 2019 MAKERS Conference on PERIOD
- “What activism means to me” – 2019
- Stories of Women – my story of jealousy | tw: sexual/child abuse
- Nadya’s Instagram: Nadya Okamoto
- PERIOD Movement’s Instagram: Period Movement
- Nadya’s YouTube: Nadya Okamoto
- Nadya’s Twitter: Nadya Okamoto
Period Movement Website: Period.org
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