Wake-up call from Waris Dirie in the fight against the corona virus

"Use the time to decelerate while Mother Earth recovers"

Waris: "A smile is contagious, but not dangerous."

I have gone through a lot in my life. As a little girl, I almost bled to death from genital mutilation. When I fled through the desert, I was closer to death than to life. But I survived, I'm here. And why? Because despite many other setbacks, I never lost my courage to face life. Many things were taken from me, even the most intimate things that can be taken from a woman, but I continued to believe in myself, even though the pain was unbearable and haunts me to this day. Giving up has never been a serious option for me.

The world is currently going through very difficult times, which demand from all of us the utmost attention, cohesion, but above all solidarity. The most important thing is to remain helpful and friendly, and not to lose the smile. A smile is contagious, but not dangerous!

Even though the measures taken in the fight against the coronavirus are drastic for each of us, they also offer a huge opportunity for humanity. Use the time to remember what is essential in life. Press the reset button. Now it's the right time to slow down. Take the forced pause for self-reflection. Rediscover the world. Reinvent yourself. And while we shift down two or three gears in life, nature and climate can recuperate. Mother Earth desperately needed a break anyway. Less air and road traffic means less CO₂ emissions. The current restrictions suddenly bring us closer to the climate goals. And when we have survived the coronavirus crisis together, hopefully the self-destructive carelessness of the last few decades will be over too.


Waris Dirie

Go back