Luomei Lyu

— Founding President

Founder's Messager

I have a family with a 17-year-old me, an 11-year-old baby sister, a 10-year-old baby brother, and parents who love each other. But after taking a second thought, you might be wondering: Were my parents trying to get a boy child? Although they always told us that it was a "coincidence," deep down, I know they do prefer my little brother over me.

 

I felt uncomfortable talking about the words "feminism" and "women's rights" because of many feminist cringe complications. In society, some fake feminists demonized the word "feminism" and made it sound like "psychopaths." I never wanted to call myself a feminist, thinking that gender inequality is such an ancient concept. I do not wish to become this unattractive, aggressive, isolating person.

 

One day, I heard my 10-year-old brother talking about how he will have a son when he grows up and aborts any female child. After childishly yelling back to him: " You can't even find yourself a wife!" I did some deep thinking and realized how much the toxic cultural taboos had affected our generation!

 

Luckily, my parents are able to provide me absolute freedom, financial support, and trust; and allow me to explore the world all on my own with no limitation. But, what about those unprivileged girls and boys in rural areas? The nonsense ideology that boys value more than girls is life-threatening!

 

I founded the Chang-E Project to leverage young people's power to promote gendered literacy through hosting speakers' events, providing educational resources, creating a blog and Instagram posts, interviewing a diverse group of people, and mentorship programs.

 

I genuinely believed in the power of education. My goal for the Chang-E Project is to become an educational resource for all boys and girls to have many choices and have independent personality, character, social status, and mind.

Curling up on the cold, marble floor of the crowded Wenzhou International Airport in Zhejiang Province, China, I felt an intensive cramp around my lower ribs. Sharp, searing pain radiated from my midsection, and my breathing became heavily labored. My dad had just kicked me in my stomach.

I crumpled to the ground as my vision blurred. Lying there, surrounded by people eating, talking, and laughing, I felt worlds away from everyone.

 

He kicked me a few more times, yelling, “I don’t love you! Everything you own is given by me. And all that belongs to your brother anyway. You want money? You can be a prostitute.” 

I was nine years old.

At thirteen, he sent me to the United States for school. Unlike most Chinese parents, he wasn’t interested in providing me a better pathway for my education and personal growth; rather, his intention was for me to stay away from hisfamily. Despite this, I still craved his love desperately, resulting in countless attempted phone calls and hang-ups. He even blocked me on WeChat. Though not houseless, I was, indeed, homeless. 

My feelings of homesickness were soon joined by helplessness as I navigated living in a foreign country where I didn’t speak the language. I was isolated socially. Ants invaded my house, as I didn’t know how to do housework, do laundry, or buy groceries to feed myself. I felt like I was drowning in a sea into which I had been pushed against my will. 

I looked for companionship in art, where my inner voice could comfort me. After some time, I started finding my confidence in making art, which I did to fill the lonely spaces. When drawing in the style of realism, every detail matters. After hours of picking the right butterscotch yellow and sharpening the colored pencil to its finest point to get that single dot next to the man’s eyebrow just right, I began to feel powerful. I felt like I had control over the papers and canvases in front of me, and that soon transformed into confidence in all corners of my life. 

I began excelling academically. While I’m now the kid who argues for extra AP classes and seeks out leadership opportunities like student government president, a few years ago I still felt fake at my most fundamental level.

I felt fake because I hid the fact that I lived alone illegally. I felt fake speaking English. I felt fake for hiding my lonely, insecure, heartbroken, and unloved self. 

I questioned why my dad told me that everything I owned belonged to my brother and told me to pursue sex work for money. I wondered why my mom hung up on me to make my brother’s breakfast when I desperately needed to talk. I pieced together the evidence right in front of me. 

Then, my eureka moment: it’s because I’m a woman. 

This feeling was confirmed by my family, who unabashedly discuss their preference for males in the family. And I’m not alone. Gender discrimination happens worldwide. Women globally face significant issues like unequal pay, lack of education access and job opportunities, sexual harassment, and domestic violence. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

The experience of being physically and emotionally abused by my parents is fuel for me. Whether it is starting my non-profit, Chang-E Project to break down gender-based stigmas and discrimination, making feminist artwork for social media, engaging in cross-cultural dialogues, or writing my book “YES, I AM A FEMINIST”to educate young students on gender-issues, I have found my voice. I am actively looking for every opportunity to empower Asian and American youth to step out of the dominant culture to uplift our silenced voices.

I no longer need validation from my family. I have grown into an independent, self-reliant, and self-loved person. I am not fake. 

I am real. 

And I am a feminist.

Luomei's Personal Story

Board of Directors

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Geneva Laurain

America

I am a senior at Calvary Chapel Christian School. I've wanted to be a part of a non profit organization like the Chang’E Project in order to spread awareness in my school and community about the gender inequality issues in East Asia.

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Noah Park

Korea

I’ve always noticed the presence of stereotypes and inequality deeply rooted in our society. Searching for an effective way to address such issues, I figured that the Chang’e project, featuring members from various nationalities and cultural backgrounds, will be a great way to uncover and resolve the inequalities we may face in today’s society. 

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Lily Liu

China

Although I am receiving American-style education, I still have to respect my parents’ traditional Chinese values, and sometimes those values can be discriminatory or “out-dated”. My intention of joining this organization is really simple: make people’s lives easier. It’s already difficult enough to live in the world, so I don’t think people should add racial, cultural, and sexual discriminations to make other’s lives harder.

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Siya Patel

India

Over time I have learned to accept the good and bad sides of India. However, certain thoughts are conflicting like the inequalities between men and women. However, having a positive perspective helps you view the better side of society. There will always be inequality in any part of the world but it depends on our morals to bring change for betterment.

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Hanna Trinh

Vietnam

As an Asian girl who has experienced both the western and Asian culture, I have witnessed first hand the stereotype and inequality pushed upon women at a young age. In joining the Chang’e Project, I hope to spread awareness both to myself and others about the constant pressure and disadvantages girls are faced with almost everyday.

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Jay Yen

Taiwan

When people are talking about the racial discrimination issues, they forget another non-negligible topic, which is gender equality. Being a part of this Chang’E Project, I want to raise the public awareness of gender inequality. Reminding people many different kinds of gender inequality problems are happening all around the world, and hoping more and more people could pay attention to this topic.

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James Yeh

Taiwan

One key aspect I noticed between these East Asian Countries and The United States is that there are far more Gender Inequality cases In East Asia. This is why I decided to join the Chang’E Organisation, we must spread awareness upon this existing issue in order to minimize it.

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Collins Acheampong

Cape Coast, Ghana

As a student athlete , I notice a lot of inequalities both at school and on the playing field. There had to be something done to educate people and my way of doing that is joining Chang’E project to make a difference.

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Jeongwon (Jayden) Roh

Korea

Introduce your team! Click here to add images, text and links, or connect data from your collectionGrowing up, I always wondered why certain jobs are held by certain genders, such as the majority of politicians being male and the majority of nurses being female. Being a young child, I just thought that this is how society works. However, as I grew up, I recognized the aforementioned social phenomenon as a major social issue: lack of gender equality among many women.

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Roman Lysenko

Russia

Our modern society has a lot of issues that exist through the generations, such as gender inequality, racism and son preference. People know about those problems and either try to ignore it or can’t find a solution to the problem. I think that the Chang’e project and it’s team are the one who can help us to find the roots and solution to those problems.

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Jack Lue

America

It's great to be a part of a non-profit organization like Chang'e Project and i'm excited to see what we can do. I've always known about the inequalities that have happened with gender inequality around the world (especially in education), and I've always wanted to get involved and see what I can do and help.

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Matt Phan

Vietnam

As an individual who was raised in a developing country, I have long been exposed to minor aspects of human lives that are rarely seen in developed countries especially like the United States. Unequal traditions between genders that exist through generations should be aware and ceased in order to form a fair environment for everyone.

Chang-E Project Chapters

Are you ready to fight for gender equity ?

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