Coming back to my past, seeing the future

Personal experience through Opole days by Luana Stew-Pattz

On our last day in Opole, there was a dynamic to choose two cards to talk about our expectations about the impact of the game we are creating. And that was an incredibly personal moment for me, it brought me so many feelings… the movie of my entire life played in my head. Where I come from, girls are not encouraged to want to be someone, to talk about themselves, or even manage to see themselves as capable of fulfilling dreams. So when I think about and work on this game, I do it with my heart, with my stories and with the hope that I can help someone find themselves and excel.

When I was around 6/7 years old, a teacher was more than a professional: she was human. She gave me a bracelet, asked me to keep it a secret and she was always patient with me and helped me a lot even if my behavior was not the best. She believed in me, she invested in me and saw something that I didn’t see and that my reality didn’t let me see: potential. And over time, I invested in myself – albeit with all the difficulties of being a black, poor and peripheral woman. Education has been the way I found to remake my destiny. And so I am building myself. I’m so grateful to have had someone that trusted in me; it changed my life.

In that final dynamic I was imagining that we are going to find other “Luana’s” all over the world. Other girls who do not have a stable home, a favorable life situation and opportunities, feel devalued, lost, without a future. I truly hope that we can light a flame within them that guides them towards what they want and what they deserve; that they feel capable of changing – themselves and the world.