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‘I Was Quite Rebellious’: Lara Dimitrijevic Touches Upon Teen Pregnancy And Young Activism During Podcast

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Human rights lawyer and Women’s Rights Foundation founder Lara Dimitrijevic has touched upon her rebellious younger years, during a podcast with Trudy Kerr for Mpowered.

“As I was growing up, whenever something was not right, I was a bit rebellious,” Lara said, recounting how she was actively involved in social issues from a very young age. 

“I remember sometime back in 1991, we did a hunger strike, locked ourselves in, I even got myself arrested,” she said, at the time being as young as sixteen years old.

“I had spearheaded this protest, we had fire engines, police all around us – It’s always been there,” she said, referring to her active side. 

Dimitrijevic also touched upon her teenage pregnancy, having gotten pregnant at the young age of 18 while she was still at University.

“I had the child, went back to University, then I started teaching English to foreigners. I could never just sit idle,” she said.

She then went back to the University to study speech therapy when she was 22 and had already had her second child at that age. However, she found issues with her application process after the Univesity thought that she was a “Russian trying to get into the University for free”.

“It was because of my surname,” she said humorously.

“And a friend of mine had just applied for the law course, and she said ‘come join me’ and I said ‘okay’.” And that’s how Dimitrijevic ended up getting into law.

She also recounted doing a lot of voluntary work, while being a mother of two and also studying at the University.

“And I used to spend a good six to eight hours working at the detention centre, primarily with women and children,” she said, detailing that it is not for the faint-hearted to be surrounded by such vulnerability.

“I started learning from them, how to make the coffee, grind the coffee, having little conversations and going into the culture, and I started learning about their terrible journey – how women were raped, how they were forced into prostitution, how women were sold, how I saw girls in the centre themselves being abused, and I said, I can’t,” she said.

She then finished the law course in 2008 and felt that she needed to create something for herself, so she embarked on the journey of justice.

If you would like to hear more about Dimitrijevic’s fascinating journey, check out the podcast down below:

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When Sasha (formerly known as Sasha Tas-Sigar) is not busy writing about environmental injustice, she's probably fighting for women's rights. Follow her at @saaxhaa on Instagram, and send her anything related to the environment, art, and women's rights at [email protected]

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