Four Year 9 pupils have established FemSoc in the hope of educating their peers about the importance of feminism.
FemSoc committee members, Isla T, Florence S, Jessica Y and Ellie W believe that by starting the society they have created a community of people who have similar ideas and who want to change what is happening around them.
The girls, who will be moving into year 10 in September, were initially the only members of FemSoc, however following the death of Sarah Everard, the society now counts over 25 members, with as many boys as girls turning up to meetings.
“We never imagined the society would grow as it has,” said Isla.
“Following the death of Sarah Everard, we had people coming up to us asking about whether or not FemSoc was starting as we’d been telling a few of our friends about it. The idea of starting something and knowing that a lot of our peers were interested felt great. We had 18 people wanting to join before it became official. Jess then brought it up in School Council and that was what made all the difference in getting it off the ground.”
Currently made up of Year 9 pupils, FemSoc meets weekly to discuss a topic which has been decided in advance. Members of the society research the history of the specific topic so that members can learn why things are the way they are and then discuss why and how changes should be made. They also invite guest speakers to attend meetings so that they get to hear real examples of the issues surrounding inequality and feminism.
Florence said: “It’s great to hear about topics from a historical aspect and say well yes that was then but this is now so how can we change it? We’re all about raising awareness and educating people and on a personal level, FemSoc has taught me a lot as we get to hear different perspectives.”
With the School about to celebrate 20 years of co-education, FemSoc has never seemed more appropriate, and the committee is hoping that for the start of the 2021/22 academic year, they will be able to invite younger year groups to join them.
“We have people from all different backgrounds currently in the society which is great,” said Jess.
“We’re excited to get younger pupils involved as they are the next generation of the school and when we leave, they will be able to keep it going.”
Ellie added: “FemSoc seems especially important right now for our school because we believe that every issue needs representation because every issue affects people. For every issue there needs to be a solution, and this seemed the most reliable solution for us. Out of it we have grown a community of people who care about something so strongly and who all share opinions on the same thing. FemSoc is so important to the people who have joined and for anyone who is too afraid to talk about something which may have affected them, they now know they have representation and support.”
If you are interested in joining FemSoc, please email one of the members of the committee.