What is it that empowers you most?
All of the strong, unapologetic women in my life. They give me the strength to continue my advocacy for feminism even in the wake of adversity.
What is it that you love most about yourself?
My capacity for empathy and compassion. It is what drives me and guides me on a daily basis. It can take an emotional & mental toll, but I wouldn't trade it for the world.
What makes you feel most beautiful?
Being in the company of people I love. I have such a strong, core group of friends and family and my partner in life who are so supportive and really care and listen to me. I feel loved and valued on a daily basis and that makes me feel so beautiful.
Who is your biggest role model and why?
One of my biggest role models is my friend Jen. I have always looked up to her. She is so intelligent and I often find myself enveloped in great feminist/human rights/current event discussions. She never ceases to open my eyes and my mind to new points of view and ways of thinking/approaching things.
Who are your favourite cultural heroines and why?
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Her novel, Americanah, was brilliant and she is such a great feminist. She is unapologetic, diplomatic, and offers a great intersectional view of feminism. Jessica Valenti is another one. Her book, Full Frontal Feminism was the catalyst for my entry into feminism. Her writing is raw and emotive, and she has dealt with a lot of hate and trolls for her outspoken defense of feminism, and yet she continues to persevere.
If you could pick one fictional female character to be for a day who would it be and why?
I have to go with Hermione just because she holds a special place in my childhood heart. I was always a bit of a goody-two-shoes student who sometimes felt embarrassed of being viewed as a "teacher's pet." Hermione is a character who embraces her mind and her intelligence and I think this is so important for young girls to learn.
What is your biggest life goal?
To work for a non-profit human rights organization and really contribute to just helping people overall. Also to live a happy and healthy life filled with people I love.
What is your biggest accomplishment?
Coming to love myself, faults and all, and being able to recognize those faults and work on them. I strive every day to make my feminism as inclusive as it can be and see things from others' points of view.
What is your favourite quote?
"I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own." - Audre Lorde
If you could tell your 12-year-old self one thing what would it be?
You are going to be okay and you will find the people who you will want to have in your life forever, and who will want you in their life forever too. You will find deep and all-consuming love.
What does feminism mean to you?
It's everything. It's a way of life, a way of living, a way of viewing absolutely everything! It is who I am and who I will always strive to be. And I will work hard every day to continue to learn and grow with the changing times.
Renee Reeves is an intersectional feminist, server and student in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada