A summary of the American Chamber of Commerce's Conference organized by Women's Executive Network in Shanghai, China. An enlightening day of keynote speeches, panels, and workshop dedicated to helping women in the workforceRead More
What better way to start off Women's History Month than a post highlighting all of the wonderful women's communities in my favorite city, Shanghai!
From mamas groups to strictly for women in business, Shanghai has a plethora of women's communities to help support, connect, and empower women.
To join any of the groups below, scan the QR code on WeChat, the must-have app in China, we don't use facebook or whatsapp in China, we use WeChat, to download click here. To learn more how we use WeChat in China, I wrote a previous blog post about it if you want to read it here
Dedicated to Shanghai’s LGBTIQ+ community. LQ focuses on empowering the LGBTIQ+ community through events and their soon to be released APP. LQ also has begun doing diversity and inclusion trainings for businesses and organizations around China.
A vibrant and fun community that organizes weekly social events from Zumba and badminton to discussions about love, sex, and many other topics.
Lean In Shanghai International
LISI is a non-profit circle part of the global Lean In platform founded by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg. The inclusive community aims to inspire and empower women to achieve their professional ambitions. LISI’s professionals have diverse backgrounds and expertise and are committed to inspire and empower women.
LISI organizes monthly events ranging from small intimate roundtables for open discussion centered around topics to speaker seminars. Each month is different and each meeting focuses on a different aspect of professional development. From negotiation in the workplace to body posture, LISI’s sessions are always inspiring and positive.
International Professional Women’s Society
Established in 1993, IPWS is a vibrant and diverse community dedicated to connecting professional women through multiple events monthly.
Topics of events range from e-commerce to intrapreneurship and always are well-moderated. Their monthly mentor walks are always full and great for younger women looking for mentorship. IPWS always has a diverse crowd of attendees with lots of women eager to network and develop their professional skills.
A grassroots DIY community that organizes a yearly festival and other events to promote gender equality and equity. Ladyfest aims to showcase, celebrate, and encourage the artistic, community, and political work and talents of women in Shanghai.
An amazing community that throws one massive kickass event every March around International Women’s Day to celebrate girl power. The event is usually an all-day affair that has workshops, performances, booths highlighting various communities and artists, food, drinks and is usually a lot of fun.
WeChat Official Account: Ladyfest_Shanghai
LT is a community dedicated to bringing together women that are newcomers to Shanghai. The community shares deals around town and general tips and advice to improve daily life in Shanghai.
A great community who gather occasionally offline. Primarily centered around WeChat groups that bring together an eclectic mix of women who discuss everything and anything related to life in Shanghai.
Women's Executive Network (WEN)
WEN provides senior female executive members of AmCham Shanghai with opportunities to connect with peers across industries and share relevant information through monthly programming including informal networking session, board-level skills training and executive coaching.
WEN members include C-suite executives, presidents, vice-presidents, partners and managing directors from a broad variety of industries. The goal of WEN is to create a community of women in top business leadership positions.
WeChat Official Account: AmChamShanghai
ShanghaiMamas.org is a diverse online community of international families living in Shanghai, China. They are there to support each other and respect each other’s views and feelings. Their discussions concern the real world of family life in Shanghai and they are primarily there for support, encouragement, helpful information, and community. All members deserve respect and support regardless of their choices, parenting or otherwise.
ShanghaiMamas meet weekly in different parts of the city to hang out, support, network and help each other be great moms in busy busy Shanghai. They also plan annual events for the community, support each other in business, and are active community members in Shanghai.
Girl Gone International
GGI! Girl Gone International is a non-profit, volunteer-led, global community dedicated to women who travel. Started in 2010 in Hamburg, Germany by Anne Scott, GGI has grown to over 140 cities globally and 23 in Asia and growing. Each community has a community manager that organizes offline social events and moderates various social media channels for women to connect and feel comfortable in their adopted cities. GGI also has a digital magazine, website, and a soon to be released APP. It’s one great big co-created community. There are currently five active communities in China; Shanghai, Nanjing, Xiamen, Chengdu and Beijing.
Chinese New Year Travels in the Philippines
What a LAZY week!! I forgot what that felt like.
Cian and I went to Cebu, Philippines for a week. Fortunately we had another week off from teaching so we have been slowly working on TONIK Design and other projects too since we returned.
Cebu was beautiful, we enjoyed the majority of the trip.
We started our trip on Malapascua Island, a few hours drive from the main Cebu Mactan airport and then a short boat ride away. All pre-organized with a nifty airport pick-up. Thanks Cian for setting that up. He is our travel planner because frankly I just don't have time for it. I didn't even know what island we were going too until we landed in Cebu. Generally, people go to Malapascua to dive and see the thresher sharks but not us, no no, we went to sleep and eat and tan. Maybe one day we will be the diving type but all bullshit aside, I needed the sun and had no plans to see anything else, just my good ol friends, the sun. I can't believe how pale and sensitive my skin has become after almost seven years in Asia.
The hotel we stayed at, Tepanee resort was idyllic and gorgeous. Cute little huts for rooms, gorgeous ocean views, reasonably priced (about 80USD a night). The only BIG issue was the customer service and management. The staff were just plain RUDE to us. Cian tried to talk to the manager at one point and she was in denial about how the staff were treating us. Then, they overcharged us numerous times, wi-fi was spotty, and they forgot my food order on numerous occasions.
On the last day, we paid for our transfer back to Cebu but the next morning ten minutes before leaving, the resort told us the coast guard had stopped all boats from leaving Malapascua Island so we had to stay for "maybe" another day. Great.
Stranded on an island, literally.
We were upset, especially because we had three days with very limited wi-fi and Cian forgot his books, and now it was raining, so couldn't really do much on this quiet little island. We got over it though, and checked into another hotel because Tepanee resort's service was that poor. The lack of wi-fi wouldn't have bothered us so much if it wasn't for the rude service from everyone at the resort.
Our last night on Malapascua Island was our favorite, the service made all the difference.
It was almost as if we were meant to completely disconnect though. Everyone is so CONNECTED nowadays, even me, I hardly take time to decompress and read a book. I hardly take time to mediate and just chill. The first two days we slept 12 hours a night, at least! We needed it though,
Shanghai life is stressful.
We are both so involved in so many projects, and then our business. We needed some down time to ourselves without distractions.
The next day, luckily the rain had stopped so were able to leave that beautiful tiny island. We hopped back over to the mainland and checked-in to the fabulous Movenpick hotel, more of a resort about 20 mins from the airport too. Movenpick had great service, a large luxurious pool, multiple restaurants, room service, and a private beach. No need to leave the resort for ANYTHING.
We spent the rest of our time in Cebu there, and did more of the same. Relax, eat, drink, sleep, read. Wi-fi wasn't much better than the island but still enough to download some podcasts and books on google. They had this chocolate happy hour from 3-4pm everyday where you could eat as many chocolate desserts as your heart desired. Truffles, toffees, cupcakes, etc. They were alright. Quality wasn't as good as I would've hoped, but still a nice touch from the hotel to make our stay more comfortable.
The Ibiza restaurant at the Movenpick was pretty freaking amazing, we ate there for Valentine's day. They had this meat buffet there for about 80USD pp including free flow wine/beer. Pretty good deal. Plus, Cian and I tried ostrich for our first time which actually tasted like a cross between chicken and beef. I thought it was going to turn into more of a club after 10pm but nope, it emptied out. Not exactly the Ibiza we were expecting considering the name of the restaurant, but it was a nice place and attached to the hotel so uber convenient. I would definitely recommend.
All was good until I turned on the TV in our hotel room and saw the Florida shooting. WTF. Why does this keep happening? and people ask me when i'm moving "home," and they wonder why I say, uhm, Shanghai is my home, and who would want to live in that kind of chaos and be forced have that kind of President? Not I.
Now, we are back in Shanghai and it feels good to be back in my safe bubble, I always take it for granted but travelling makes me realize how fortunate we are. Chinese New Year was in full force still when we arrived. Most places are still closed, streets are so quiet. It's be SO NICE. I am still rocking the red as much as possible because the Chinese superstitions have rubbed off on me. Good ol' China. My home.
My two cents on organizing TEDx adventures and the formal press release of the second TEDxPuxi Adventure in Shanghai, China that I organized along with my badass girl power team. Featuring some of Shanghai's movers and shakers and centered around the important topic of why we need role models?Read More
Girl Gone International Shanghai had it's 3-year anniversary party this past weekend. We had a great turnout and a great time. Can't believe how time has flown and how impactful this community has been in my life.Read More