Agency for Change- Jill Heggen and Tiffany Seibert Joekel, Women's Fund of Omaha » KidGlov

 

Announcer:

Welcome to Agency for Change, the podcast that brings you the stories of people creating positive change in the world. We explore what inspires these changemakers, the work they’re doing and how they share their message. Each of us can play a part in change, and these are the people who show us how.

Lyn Wineman:

Hello, Changemakers. This is Lyn Wineman, President of KidGlov. Welcome to another inspiring episode of the Agency for Change Podcast. Today, I am really looking forward to a very interesting conversation with Tiffany Seibert Joekel and Jill Heggen. They are both with the Women’s Fund of Omaha, an organization that’s working on the most critical challenges facing both women and girls. Jill and Tiffany, welcome to the podcast. Let’s just get started. Jill, I have a question for you to get us going. Can you give us the high level overview of the kinds of work you are doing at the Women’s Fund of Omaha?

Jill Heggen:

The Women’s Fund has been around for more than 30 years. We’ve provided more than 35 million grants to programs working to address the most critical issues that you talked about, impacting local women and girls. Our work has really stretched statewide as we work on advocacy and grant funding throughout Nebraska now, and our work is aligned in our values. We’re focused on equity, bold impact collaboration, community, voice, intersectionality and bodily autonomy. And we want to see women in these communities reach their full potential.

Jill Heggen:

So we look at the issues that are most critical to women and girls. We’re rooted in research, so we know what issues are impacting them. Then we fund grant programs so the programs and the people who are making a difference in the life of women and girls have the funding they need to make that bold impact. We also do a lot of work in public advocacy, which is what Tiffany will talk a lot about today, and it is super brilliant.

Lyn Wineman:

Super brilliant. I always love talking about things that are super brilliant. Tiffany, can you share a few key factors that demonstrate the uphill battle that women are facing today?

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

Yeah. Lyn, thank you. And again, thanks for having us in this important conversation. So, as Jill mentioned, the Women’s Fund engages to create opportunities for women and girls in our community and across the state. I think we need look no further than daily news headlines to see the types of challenges women and girls are facing. From battling systems of patriarchy and misogyny in our workplaces, in the community, to disrupting systems of white supremacy and the intersections of all of these systems that keep women and girls from reaching their full potential. Those are the areas in which the Women’s Fund works to create system change so that all women and girls have the opportunity to excel and succeed.

Lyn Wineman:

I do love that. I’ve been in the workforce, I hate to tell you for how long, but for well over 30 years. And I feel like so much change has happened, but yet I also feel like we have so far to go. You shared some, and I’ve seen a lot of data, indicating that women have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Does your data also support this?

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

What I will say, Lyn, is that the COVID crisis has been devastating for women. There’s no doubt about that. What I think is also true to remember, though, is many of the ways these barriers have surfaced, these are not new things. These are not new challenges. There’s simply no denying them anymore. There’s no pretending that they don’t exist. The crisis, the pandemic and its impact on employment has simply elevated and shown a light on the problems that have always existed. For example, the COVID crisis disproportionately impacted women in job loss, and still continues to. The unemployment rate among women is two points higher than where it was when this crisis started. And that is predominantly because the sectors most impacted by this crisis are also those who have been disproportionately where women have held the jobs.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

The service sector, for example, the restaurants and tourism industry, those sorts of industries were hardest hit. Women also represent the majority of our low wage workforce. The reverberations in our low wage workforce were tremendous when this crisis hit. Additionally, the caregiving crisis has been a result of COVID. With childcare closing and with schools closing, at one point in the summer one in three caregivers was considering leaving the workforce because they could not maintain their responsibilities to both their job and their family.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

While there is some data to show that men did bear some of that caregiving burden, the majority of that always has and continues to fall squarely on the shoulders of women. That has then created significant impact on our workforce. One way we could have adjusted and supported that is by making sure we prioritize our childcare system, so that all workers have access to affordable, high quality childcare. Another piece we needed before the crisis, and we still need now, is access to paid leave.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

All workers have obligations to their family members. And when our structures of employment allow us to meet both the needs of our family and our employers, our workforce will be stronger. Unfortunately, many people—particularly women—did not have access to those kinds of flexible and family-supporting work environments that allow them to do both, and so they dropped out of the workforce. At a time when our business community consistently discusses that the largest challenge they face is finding qualified workers to fill and meet their needs, we are not supporting women in engaging in the workforce in the way they would like to, because they are bearing the majority of the caregiving responsibility at home as well.

Jill Heggen:

The other piece of that is paid leave. In our minds, we’re always thinking about women caring for young children. But the other part that COVID has really amplified, which has always been the case for women, is caregiving for elderly parents, which most likely falls on the woman as well. Not only is she caring for her young children who are out of daycare and out of school, but she’s trying to navigate online systems to get her parents vaccinated. She’s caring for elderly grandparents who have appointments and need extra transportation. And all of that has just been compounded by the pandemic. Again, these are not new issues. They’ve just been compounded so much and pushed women further and further back in this equity we’ve tried for so many years to reach.

Lyn Wineman:

I really have seen, as you’ve mentioned, the caregiving crunch. We are an all-female team at KidGlov, and we’ve seen it. I have such strong admiration for the women who are taking care of kids at home, becoming teachers, and helping their parents. I think our team is probably lucky, because our work can be shifted to remote work, but not everybody has that luxury. Really good points. And so, Jill, question for you—and I’m just going to say right now, this may seem like a silly question. I’m kind of setting you up here. Why is it important for us to support women in these challenging issues?

Jill Heggen:

It’s a great question! And I wish more people would think about it in this way. Every time a woman has an opportunity to become a leader, to earn enough money to support her family, or to safely leave a violent relationship, our whole community becomes better, more vibrant, more equitable, more economically sound—all of these things, in fact, impact our whole community. Tiffany and I have talked about this a lot, and we’ve hinted at it a little bit in previous answers, Lyn: everybody benefits when those most marginalized are impacted and lifted up. We can’t just focus on these as women’s issues. These are human issues. These are issues that impact everybody. Again, if we take COVID, housing issues and housing insecurity was impacted more during the COVID crisis. If a woman doesn’t have a safe home to be in, whether she’s in abusive relationship or has an abusive partner who was impacted during COVID, there is nowhere else to go.

Jill Heggen:

And we were also telling people to stay home for their safety during a global health pandemic. If home wasn’t a safe place or you didn’t have a home, how could we be surprised that this pandemic would go the way it did. We have a housing crisis in the United States, and right here in Nebraska. Until we focus on those issues that greatly impact women and girls, our communities will suffer. When we do that, when we focus on these issues that for so long we’ve called “women’s issues,” we will really benefit the whole community.

Lyn Wineman:

That is great. And you know what, when you say that I think most people would say yes, obviously that makes sense. But what I appreciate about the Women’s Fund is that you keep these issues front of mind for us. And you advocate and move them forward in a positive way. Tiffany, you’re the research and policy director for the Women’s Fund of Omaha, and I am sure you are very busy right now with the Nebraska legislature in session. What are some of the key policy issues you’re working on?

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

Thanks for this question, Lyn. As we said, the Women’s Fund works in a variety of ways, but a primary way we enact change and work to improve our communities for women and girls is through policy change. When we disrupt and dismantle systems that create barriers to women, we are having an impact today and tomorrow, and for future generations. The policy change is critical. Our funding is important, our research is important, but changing and building better systems is what will really reverberate for our generation and the next and the next. There are lots of really important issues for women at the legislature. At the Women’s Fund, we look at our expertise and our relationships and where we are able to best have an impact. We generally look at policy issues within freedom from violence, which would include issues of gender-based violence and sexual violence, and addressing sex trafficking.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

We do work in economic stability and women’s leadership. We look at policies in that space. And then we also do policy work around reproductive health, access to reproductive health and sexual literacy. There were over 600 bills introduced this session at the legislature. The Women’s Fund ultimately took a position on around 40 of those bills. There are several that are really important to us that are moving forward, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to chat about them a little bit. One issue that has been something the Women’s Fund has been working on for the last couple of years—and we are really supporting the leadership of I Be Black Girl in this space—is an initiative of the Women’s Fund, and there is a bill LB451 that would ban natural hair discrimination in the workplace.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

Research is very clear that black women are subject to over-policing based upon their appearance and their hairstyle in the workplace. They are more likely to be made aware of grooming policy or a workplace stress policy because of their hair. This is really rooted in racism and an understanding of what is professional based upon a sort of Eurocentric understanding of beauty and professionalism. This prevents black women from showing up to work as who they are and expressing themselves. Quite frankly, they are then judged not by the skills and qualifications they bring to the job, but the way their hair looks. And so LB451 has been introduced and prioritized by Senator Terrell McKinney. It is now advanced from the committee and is ready for full debate by the legislature. We are really hopeful that that bill will move forward this year. Another bill we’re working on will be LB320. And when I say LB that means legislative bill.

Lyn Wineman:

Thank you for that. For those of us who aren’t advocacy wonks, right?

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

Yes.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

A priority for the Women’s Fund this session is Legislative Bill 320. This bill was introduced by Senator John Cavanaugh and prioritized by Senator John Cavanaugh. It is intended to promote housing stability for survivors of domestic violence, making sure they are not evicted because of the violence that has been committed upon them. And also providing an avenue for people in a domestic violence situation to be able to safely exit a lease, so that a lease isn’t keeping them from achieving safety and a safe place to live.

Lyn Wineman:

You know, I can’t imagine the stress of that meeting to get out of a situation, a life-threatening situation, and then having to be worried about your lease.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

Right. Economic security and stability is a primary barrier to safety. And it is one of the main reasons people struggle to leave a violent situation, because perhaps they depend on the income of their partner. Perhaps they don’t have a safe place to live. Perhaps they don’t know how they’ll provide for their child or pay childcare or put food on the table. When we compound that trauma by making housing so difficult and making it such a precarious situation, we are not serving and supporting survivors; we can do better. LB320 allows a safe process to get out of a lease in the instance of domestic violence. We’re also very interested in bills that support access to work, help folks meet the needs of their families, and also provide affordable childcare or food security.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

Programs that provide that assistance when folks need it as they work their way to economic stability. And then finally, another issue that I just think is important to raise—it’s not at the legislature, but it is an important conversation we’re having right now. The state Department of Education is undergoing a process of creating health standards that schools across the state could look at and implement to guide what they are teaching our students about how to grow into healthy and successful adults. These standards the Department of Education are developing are voluntary. They are not mandatory. They do not have to be implemented by schools across the state, but they are important in setting the standard for what schools can look to about how to implement the most comprehensive and impactful health education curriculum for our students.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

The Women’s Fund is working to support that from a variety of angles. We are very interested in strong inclusion of sexual and reproductive literacy, as well as sexual violence prevention in those standards. It is absolutely critical that we’re teaching those components from a young age. That is a process that we’ll be engaging in for the next several months.

Lyn Wineman:

Tiffany, that’s a lot. It’s a lot of work and a lot of issues. And it’s kind of fascinating to me, because I really do believe that in conversation every Nebraska state senator would say gender equality is important. Fairness to women is important, but man we’re not there yet! Is this implicit bias? What is it that makes this change so difficult?

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

I think it’s a lot of factors, Lyn, and that is why we think it’s important to analyze and change structures. We have to think about and understand the way our systems and structures were built that do not support equity, whether that’s gender equity or racial equity. And it is implicit bias. It’s also some explicit bias. And an understanding of the role of women in our workforce, the role of women in our families and how that’s changing. Again, I think that is why it’s so important that at the Women’s Fund we are rooted in research so we can make a strong case for the need to change systems and we can realize equity. An example that I give is we’ve been working on a bill to support pay equity, and the bill would ban or prohibit asking about salary history information when you’re applying for a job.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

The reason is, the research is very clear that we cannot separate as women, and particularly for women of color, what you were paid at a prior job from any potential discrimination that may be embedded in that pay structure. When you go to apply for a new job and that employer asks you, “What did you make at your last job?” and they base their offer on what you made at your last job, they are further perpetuating that discrimination that may have existed before. That employer could have the best of intentions. That new employer could be very meaningfully working towards equity. And that could be their intent, but that is not their impact if they use that information to inform your future salary. So that’s a way to disrupt the system.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

I think that’s something people wouldn’t necessarily recognize as a process or a piece that perpetuates inequity, but it is very clear that it does. There was research this summer that found, in the states that have implemented a salary history ban, when people change jobs they saw 5-6 percent higher salaries on average. And for women, it was 8 percent where there were salary history bans in place. And for black job seekers, it was 13 percent.

Lyn Wineman:

Wow!

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

Here is a seemingly neutral practice, but the reality is it perpetuates bias. For us at the Women’s Fund, it is about finding those solutions and educating about that impact so we can continue to dismantle these systems that keep in place a patriarchal, white supremacist structure.

Lyn Wineman:

I am really glad you shared that, because that is something I think most hiring managers and business owners would think of as a benign practice. I even think as a business owner and as a mom of young women—young professional women—I’m proud of the fact that I have taught them to negotiate. When you accept that first lower salary because you want to get the job, that could potentially impact your entire career and have a pretty significant earning differential over your career. Just hearing that makes me more aware of the hiring we’ll do here at KidGlov. Thank you for that. Jill, I’d love to talk to you. We’ve talked a lot about legislative issues. It’s a very important part of what you do, but I know there’s other work you’re doing that supports women’s causes. I’ve seen online that you have created a very comprehensive media guide that also brings out some of these implicit biases that people probably don’t understand. I know you’re having power hour discussions. What are some of these initiatives we should be aware of?

Jill Heggen:

I’m really proud of our small but mighty team. I’m just one part of our public awareness team, but you’re exactly right. If you don’t know about the issue, you can’t do something about it. We take all this wonderful work of our initiatives, of our policy work, and we put it together in a way that people can engage with. As Tiffany said, the policy arena is not meant for people to engage with. It was set up in this really clunky way. But specifically, if you look at LB451, with the natural hair discrimination, if you’re a white, male, bald senator, you’ve never been told how your hair should look in the workplace. We need to create a pathway for people to engage in the process, to share their story, to inform senators. We have this really beautiful unicameral system in Nebraska, we’re the only state that is set up this way, which means Nebraskans are truly the second house—their information, how they’re telling their stories, how they’re engaging in the process really has an impact in the state of Nebraska.

Jill Heggen:

It’s truly unique to our state. And so how does our team package the fact sheets? Not everybody’s going to read a bill. I never have read a bill, but I’ve read our fact sheets. And so I can better understand what’s in the bill. How does it impact women and girls? And what’s my role in engaging in this legislation? That’s part of what are small but mighty team does. Yeah, we have the comprehensive media guide as well. We’re seeing just recently in the news there’s a lot of conversation around sexual violence and the way people understand that. For a long time, people questioned the woman. What was she wearing? Why was she out at night? If we look at super recent cases, women were in the workplace and they were murdered. How does the language in those situations impact how people understand?

Jill Heggen:

We know nothing about the survivors. We know nothing about their hopes and dreams, their families, the lives they live. All we know is that a man went into a workplace and killed eight people. How do we shift that narrative to talk about sexual violence? Once people better understand how it happens, we can better prevent it. If we’re just asking women why they didn’t leave, we can’t understand all those barriers to why women are in abusive situations. All the isolation, all the economic coercion that is happening in those relationships. There’s a lot we have to unpack about the way society has taught us about sexual violence in particular. Until we better understand it, can we prevent it? That’s what the media guide really does, and working with the local media in Omaha and across the state of Nebraska to better report and shape the stories so people can understand how this is happening in our communities.

Lyn Wineman:

I appreciate that too, because I believe words really do matter, and the words we use even once. As I work with young professional women, as they’re starting their career, just helping them eliminate the words from their language that are soft words or words that maybe downgrade their effort or their work or the significance of their talent—those words do matter. I am a big believer in the ripple effect too, which goes back to words. And it goes back to actions. I believe each one of us can do something that makes a difference. And Tiffany, I am curious, can you just give us some suggestions? What are some day-to-day actions we all can do that will make a difference?

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

From my lens as a policy advocate, it is important to reach out and develop a relationship with your elected officials. This doesn’t have to be all of them. You don’t have to know them all by name, but I do want to stress to folks that particularly as you get closer to your own government, the lower levels of government, those folks really do pay attention and listen to their constituents. They want to hear from the people they represent. I think there’s often a sense that “We don’t need to reach out on this issue. There’s lots of other people doing it.” Or “What will it matter if I reach out?” I think the truth is on a number of issues that we care about, there aren’t that many people reaching out.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

It does matter. If you’re a worker and you want to express your opinion about this issue, if you’re a parent, if you’re an expert in the field, it can be as easy as: “Dear counsel person. Thank you for paying attention to affordable housing. I think it’s critical. I’m happy to continue to engage in this work.” or “Dear Senator, my family has experienced domestic violence and understands how hard it is to find stable housing. Please support this bill.” or “Dear Board Member, I have three children who are in public schools, and I think it is critical that we engage them in conversations about how to be healthy adults. As a parent, I am excited to partner with you in this work.” It is very simple. You don’t have to be an expert. You are an expert in your own story and your experience.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

I think it is as simple as reaching out for many issues. Our elected officials are not receiving hundreds of contacts, they’re receiving tens, maybe. I do think that’s really important. The other piece, I would say, just is supporting women—think about the ways in which we can lift each other up. We can bring each other to the table. We can make room for each other at the table, making sure we’re trying to get rid of this scarcity mindset that keeps these power systems in play. How can we support particularly women who are not at the table? Looking around the room, are there women from other identities who aren’t represented? Are we bringing black women’s voices? Are we bringing Native American women’s voices? Are we bringing Latina voices to the table? Making room for each other and supporting each other where we can I think is really important.

Lyn Wineman:

I think that’s really, really great advice. I’m even going to make the same comment on local companies and advertisers. You would be surprised how much a heartfelt phone call or email or note in the mail will in fact make a difference. I think a person really speaking from the heart, sharing your experience, does help. I’m always curious about the paths people take to get into their careers. You two are both successful, strong, talented women, I can tell. Tiffany, how did you get into this line of work?

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

A bit of a winding path. As many of us, I’m not sure this is where I thought I would end up. But I have had a really strong interest in the way systems impact people’s lives. For example, looking around and thinking about the ways I have benefited from systems that were created. I’m a public school-educated kid, so just thinking about all the ways I have benefited from the systems that have surrounded me and the structures, and the way that not all have had those same opportunities. I’ve been really interested in policy. I’m a nerd, I’m a policy wonk in that way. That you can write a long piece of paper and it can have a tremendous amount of impact for good or for not has interested me.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

I have really been passionate about how we can make these systems and structures work better. I got an undergrad in political science and a master’s in international relations. I was particularly interested in international systems and the way our economy in the United States had such an impact on people across this globe. But out of grad school, I worked on some campaigns and got really involved. I decided politics was not what I was interested in. I don’t actually enjoy that part of the work. I enjoy the policy. I really like the “in the weeds” stuff. And so I got to work at Voices for Children as an advocate doing this kind of policy work. I had an opportunity eventually to work as a legislative aid, as a staffer at the legislature, which was a tremendous experience. And then somehow, a couple of years later, I landed in my dream job at the Women’s Fund.

Lyn Wineman:

Oh, isn’t that awesome! I love talking with people who have their dream job. People who are really passionate about the work they do. You can just feel and see it when you talk to them. Jill, how about you? I’d love to hear your story.

Jill Heggen:

I have always been a chatty child. My mom would be scared if I didn’t come home. I walked by myself home from school at the exact same time every day, but I would stop and talk to anybody. I had stories to tell, I had things to say. In fact, in first grade I got set out in the hallway with my whole desk because I was talking too much, even to the teacher. I’ve definitely learned to be more strategic with my communication over the years. But I did book reports by myself over the summer. I was just really interested in writing and reading and consuming news and pop culture. I wanted it all. I spent a lot of time in front of the TV as a young child and reading books. I was always interested in communications, and I took a path through public television and higher education.

Jill Heggen:

I had a short stint at an agency, and then was recruited through LinkedIn for this Women’s Fund position. I knew they were working on issues I cared about, and I was just getting started planting my roots in the Omaha community. I knew this would be a next step for doing that and really building a life here in Omaha. It’s been four and a half years since, and I’ve learned so much about policy, about advocating for yourself, about having open conversations with your children. I’ve become a better parent and a better person and am just really excited to come to work every day and support what we’re doing in the community.

Lyn Wineman:

I love how you both have built careers on your passions and your interests, but yet they maybe didn’t take that straight arrow path. All right, Jill and Tiffany, I am always inspired by motivational quotes. And this is my favorite question to ask people. Could you each give us a few of your own words of wisdom for our listeners? And Jill, since you’re the chatty one, let’s start with you.

Jill Heggen:

Something that’s come to me over the past couple of years is to diversify your news and amplify voices that you’re not used to. You learn so much more when you’re listening to and engaging with people who don’t look like you, who don’t think like you. You’re going to be pushed to do and think different ways. And that’s a good thing. I think change is hard, especially for me. I’m a Taurus, and change is super hard for me. But diversify your news, amplify different voices and listen.

Lyn Wineman:

Nice. That is great. Tiffany, you’re next.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

I wish I had something brilliant to say. I’m not sure I do. Something I probably say about three times a day, it feels like, is that right now we are all just doing the best that we can do. Right? I work and interact with so many people, women in particular, who are struggling under the challenges of work and caregiving and lots of demands of trying to advance important policy. And lots of people are having a hard time. I think it’s important for us to give ourselves some grace. All we can do every day is show up and do the best we can do. Another thing I try to think about and try to ask my kiddos every day is how are you brave today? What did you do that was brave today?

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

I think this is important for us in particular. We do have a seat at the table. We do have a seat in power. How are we using our power and privilege to disrupt the systems that have benefited us to the detriment of others? We need to have hard conversations, and we need to bring others to the table. Sometimes that can feel a little dangerous for our power and privilege and the place we hold. And so how are we engaging in this work authentically, and being brave in trying to achieve the equity and the representation we want and know is important to really achieving our mission for the Women’s Fund, but also just as women supporting each other?

Lyn Wineman:

I like all of those words. That was the trifecta of inspiration and wisdom. Let’s make sure we’re amplifying new voices, talking to people we don’t normally talk with. Amazing! Let’s make sure we’re giving each other and ourselves grace. We’re all just doing the best we can. And we’ve been going through a lot this past year. I imagine it’s going to be years before we really work through the impact of this. And then, how are you brave today? I love that, for yourself and for others. Really great stuff. As we wrap up our time together, what is the best way for our listeners to learn more about the Women’s Fund of Omaha, or even go in and support your work, maybe find out about some of the resources or the policies, you’re advocating for?

Jill Heggen:

Website, social media, follow us, like us, get engaged online at Omahawomensfund.org. On our website you can donate to our group. You can also sign up for our email alerts. That’s how we summarize our policy efforts, let you know what action items are needed from you. It’s a really great way to get a preview of what’s happening at the legislature and how it impacts women and girls specifically. Sign up for our emails. We’re also on Twitter as Omaha Women’s Fund, and on Facebook as well. And we’ll do action alerts. We’ll push out news. We’ll amplify voices. We’ll share news from our other grantees and community organizations that way as well. And really just let you know what’s happening and what you can care about. There’s so much you could care about for women and girls. And we try to synthesize all of that and get it into a way you can really understand and engage with.

Lyn Wineman:

Fantastic! We’ll get that web address and those social media links in the show notes as well. My last question for each of you on this podcast: what is the most important thing you would like people to remember about the work you’re doing? And Tiffany, let’s start with you on this one.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

I think the most important thing to remember is you are a part of it. You’re a part of this work. Our team works really hard to try to find ways to support others and engage, but our work at the end of the day is really only as strong as the others who are willing to speak up and get involved in it. I could be the best lobbyist in the world, but I need constituents and I need policymakers to be hearing from their people in their district that they also care about these issues. I can’t do this work alone.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

I try to support others in using their voice, but we need folks to use their voice. We try to make a variety of ways that folks can engage in that work. Maybe you’re not comfortable reaching out to your elected official, but you are comfortable sharing some of our materials on social media, that’s a way you feel comfortable engaging and amplifying and using your voice. That’s great! There are a lot of ways you can be a part of this work. And so please join us and join the conversation with us about how we can all play a role in building communities that support opportunities for women and girls.

Lyn Wineman:

That’s great advice. You can’t do it yourself. The Women’s Fund can’t do it alone either. You need all of us to come in and help support. Jill, how about you? What would you like us to take away today?

Jill Heggen:

You stated it so beautifully. I would just add that we all have language and we all have the power to shape the narrative in our communities around what’s happening and how issues impact women and girls. Because we all have language, we all have the power to shift the narrative, change the game, uplift women, and support each other. I think when all of our voices are joined together, we’re going to be that much more powerful. Use the powers you have and the ways you have with the energy you have, and we’ll make a difference for people right here in Nebraska.

Lyn Wineman:

That’s really good stuff. Jill, Tiffany, thank you both so much for sharing your time and your wisdom. You are doing really important work that will affect positive change for generations of women to come. And I really appreciate it.

Tiffany Seibert Joekel:

Thank you, Lyn.

Announcer:

You’ve been listening to Agency for Change. If you’re enjoying these inspiring stories, please subscribe. Is there a changemaker you’d like to recommend for this podcast? Just visit the KidGlov website at kidglov.com to share or to listen to more stories about the people behind positive change.

Download the transcription