I'm a filmmaker, photographer, writer, and activist from Yemen. I was born in 1990 in Egypt and have lived all my childhood and teenage years in the capital city of Yemen, Sanaa. I started writing when I was 9 years old and published poems and short stories in a number of local newspapers both in Arabic and in English. When I was 15 years old, I published my first book in Arabic about child rights, titled: "Life has other faces".
In 2008, I went to live in Malaysia to take my degree from Limkokwing University in which I majored in Digital Film and Television. I returned back to Yemen in 2012 and have since then started working at Save the Children and engaging in different women's rights campaigns and events. I started using Facebook as a way to get my voice out there and my opinions regarding women's rights and freedom were always controversial according to my society. In September of 2012, I decided to started a blog "A Rebellious Woman's blog" as a platform for my opinions about the patriarchal society in which I live in. Also, in April 2013, I started a project called "The Yemeni Feminist Movement" on Facebook and Twitter to promote gender rights and oppose gender discrimination. Since then, I have received threats from religious extremists because of my work in promoting women's rights but I'm determined to not let that stop me.
In July 2013, I became known as the first person to get an exclusive interview with Nada Al-Ahdal, an 11 year old Yemeni girl who ran away from home to escape marriage, which was published in my blog and received a large number of hits. Furthermore, I made a video interview with Nada which received good reviews and was also translated into French.
I am very determined to continue my fight for women's rights in my country and I'm very honored to be representing SistaEnable in Yemen. I believe that story telling is the best way to promote awareness and get people to take action. That's why I'm into filmmaking and writing, and that's why I'm so happy to be with SistaEnable.
Alaa blogs from here: http://about.me/alaa.aleryani