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A heartfelt plea to help and be helped


Dear Jancy,
I am inspired with your passion for mentoring, collaboration and risk taking strategies to enhance career development. The mission of Dove’s “Campaign For Real Beauty” to build positive self-esteem and self-worth in females to realize and reach full potential is overwhelmingly powerful and I would like to be part of this journey.
I know first-hand the detrimental effects of low self-esteem and negative body image (isolation, depression, anxiety, disordered eating, substance abuse, self-doubt, prisoner in your own body). It’s been a long and arduous journey however I have been able to pick myself up by my bootstraps (as my grandmother said) through the years and forged ahead into various careers, currently as a global project manager in cardiovascular clinical research trials at Harvard Clinical Research, however with lack of a positive mentor and career development I have lost the motivation and passion.
So you are probably asking yourself, “does she even have a question?” Yes. Would there be a career opportunity to collaborate in some way with the mission of Dove’s “Campaign For Real Beauty” to mobilize this critical message to females or all ages all over the world? I believe my mission is to utilize my past/present difficulties and turn them into a positive movement so young women who feel despair and self-loathing can be provided with tools to turn it around. I believe this is my passion, I just don’t know how to achieve this goal. I certainly still have a long way to go to feel “good” about myself; I have to admit I have called into work “sick” when I was really calling in “fat” because I couldn’t find anything to wear and didn’t feel “pretty enough” to make it into the office. Self-acceptance and self-worth is a work in progress and needs to be challenged every day.
Thank you in advance for your time.

intro A heartfelt plea to help and be helpedWow, Jennifer. Thanks for having the courage to write, the courage to share, the courage to want to change things for others. Women are so unfairly hard on themselves, so critical, so filled with judgement. That’s the society we live in and it we’re passing it on to our children. Madness. We can only hope that there are more like you who want to hold up the mirror and work for change. Participating in the Campaign for Real Beauty was perhaps the greatest experience of our career. Janet would say that it’s one of the main reasons she stayed at Ogilvy for so long.

As we’re no the first line of information on the Campaign for Real Beauty, we called on our friend, Sharon Macleod, the VP of Brand Building at Unilever Canada. She’s been connected to CFRB (there, now you’re in on the lingo), almost as long as we have and is one of the mission’s great champions. Here’s her advice:

If Jennifer wants to get involved, she should go to our site to see the tools and resources available. It gives the people the activities & inspiration to help young girls. As I think we all know, helping others is often one of the best way to help ourselves.

Jancy salutes you.

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About Jancy

'Jancy' is Janet Kestin and Nancy Vonk, Co-Founders of Swim, a unique “creative leadership training lab for advertising creatives and marketers.” Prior to Swim, Jancy was globally renowned as the Co-Chief Creative Officers of Ogilvy & Mather Toronto, a position they held for thirteen of the twenty years they were a creative duo at the agency. Over the years they've racked up Cannes Lions, Clios, One Show pencils and CA credits, and have lead their shop to two Cannes Lions Grand Prix and a Grand Clio. They've judged CA, Cannes, D&AD, the One Show, the Clios and other prestigious award shows. Creativity named them two of the top 50 creative people of 2008. Known for their outspoken, no-bullshit style and a passion for mentoring juniors, they're ready to give you advice if you're ready to take it.

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