Kathryn, 28, public policy professional living in Melbourne

Omeed, 27, management consultant living in Melbourne
 
Equality of men and women
 
Kathryn: “My view is that achieving greater equality between women and men will drive global prosperity – it will mean that everyone, regardless of their sex, is given the opportunity to develop, contribute to society and be respected.”
 
Omeed: “I think the equality of women and men is a solution to the world's problems. Gender inequality is much more than an injustice to 50 per cent of the population; it is an injustice to us all.”
 
Motivation
 
Kathryn: “The equality of men and women, I believe, is fundamental to many other contemporary issues, including ending poverty and ensuring economic prosperity, social cohesion, and even geopolitical stability. In my opinion, the Baha’i Faith offers a direct and unique perspective on equality, one which is rooted in the belief that the soul has no gender.”  
 
Omeed: “Involvement in this issue is an effective way to make the world a better place while also improving the lives of women. In the developing world, gender equality is a pathway to economic development and political stability. In the developed world, understanding equality changes the values of our societies from a singular pursuit of power, to one that appreciates service. I believe that both these aspects together will result in a peaceful and united world.”
 
Activities
 
Kathryn: “Advancing the equality of men and women is an integral part of my life personally, professionally and academically.  I offer my time to community organisations active in the area.  It was also a focus of my university studies. With Omeed, I participated in the 54th UN Commission on the Status of Women as a representative of the Australian Baha'i Community.”
 
Omeed: “I have been involved in this issue since I was an undergraduate at university, where I gave presentations on the topic. I attended the 54th UN Commission on the Status of Women with Kathryn. It was a positive experience. Apart from the time I spend actively on this issue, ultimately I feel it is about daily application. I try to be active in this issue in the way I conduct my personal and business affairs.”
 
Inspiring quotation
 
Kathryn: "Women have equal rights with men upon earth... As long as women are prevented from attaining their highest possibilities, so long will men be unable to achieve the greatness which might be theirs." (Baha’i Writings).
 
Omeed:Whether peace is to be reached only after unimaginable horrors precipitated by humanity's stubborn clinging to old patterns of behaviour, or is to be embraced now by an act of consultative will, is the choice before all who inhabit the earth." (Universal House of Justice)
  
Final observations
 
Kathryn: “This is a critical issue which requires the participation of all people and engagement with all sectors.”
 
Omeed: “Achievement of the equality of the sexes will benefit both men and women. Men have a lot more to gain than most people realise.”