What is Empowerment?

What is Empowerment?

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime

Definition of Empowerment

  • The granting of the power, right, or authority to perform various acts or duties.
  • Authority, right, or power given to someone to do something.
  • The process of becoming stronger and more confident, especially in controlling one’s life and claiming one’s rights.
  • The process of gaining freedom and power to do what you want or to control what happens to you.
  • Freedom to act.
  • The process of giving a group of people more freedom or rights.

What is empowerment? Empowerment is having the freedom, right or power to act, to perform various acts or duties. To do what you want or to control what happens to you. Claiming one’s rights.

What it is to Empower

Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg, Gauteng, on 13 May 2008. Author: South Africa The Good News
Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg, Gauteng, on 13 May 2008. Author: South Africa The Good News

“Education is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world.” Nelson Mandela

To Empower or Empowerment is:

allow, entitle, encourage; equip, endow, enable, supply, give qualities or abilities to

render capable or able for some task

to promote the self-actualization or influence by inspiring

emancipate, give means to, enfranchise, empowering by means of education

Empowerment also includes encouraging, and developing the skills for self-sufficiency. The process is to start and to implement as you go along, then it becomes effective. Self-sufficiency is becoming, being able, or depending on oneself, instead of being on charity, or welfare. Self-confidence grows because one becomes fully self-supporting.

The opportunities created by oneself garners a pride of accomplishment since one can develop for oneself. One can then take responsibility and credit for the success of projects and the consequences. Empowerment occurs through the improvement of our conditions, and our global perspective of life. Strategies that cause changes, which can profoundly, directly, and positively impact communities.

Empowerment refers to increasing the spiritual, social, educational, and economic strength of individuals and communities, to recognize and use their resources. Empowerment is characterized by a movement of continuing education and self-help. Empowerment is seen as a tool to increase the responsibility of the citizen.

Marianne Williamson
Marianne Williamson

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” Marianne Williamson

So Empowerment is a process by which people, groups, organizations, and communities, individually and collectively, gain mastery over their lives, and in so doing, maximize the quality of their lives. They do so by taking control of their very own circumstances, utilizing their ability to envision and achieve their own goals.

For Empowerment entails that people involve themselves in their own decision-making processes. They create their own strategies that cause changes, for the improvement and betterment of their own lives. By having the authority they could make plans, set their own goals, organize their work using their skill-set and management of operations.

Types of Empowerment

"Quit India Movement ", photo at Gandhi Memorial, Sabarmati Ashram, Ahamadabad. Author: Susant purohit
“Quit India Movement “, photo at Gandhi Memorial, Sabarmati Ashram, Ahamadabad. Author: Susant purohit

“A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.” Mahatma Gandhi

Self-empowered people possesses the pride of accomplishment as they develop for themselves. The empowerment approach focuses on mobilizing to help oneself to improve or transform their social, political or economic situations. They learn how they can use their own abilities to advance their life situations.

There are many different types of empowerment. Types of empowerment of individuals, groups, organizations, whether they are government organizations or non-government organizations, and communities.

Some of the types of empowerment, or categories of empowerment are:

  • Individual Empowerment
  • Group Empowerment, or People Empowerment
  • Community Empowerment
  • Empowerment Programs or Programmes
  • Empowerment Technology
  • Skill Empowerment
  • Empowerment in Development
  • Psychological Empowerment
  • Youth Empowerment
  • Empowerment for at-risk Youths
  • Women’s Empowerment
  • Empowering Women in the Developing World
  • Cultural Empowerment
  • Economic Empowerment
  • Societal Empowerment, or Social Empowerment
  • Political Empowerment
  • Empowerment in Business
  • Employee Empowerment
  • Empowerment in the Workplace
  • Empowerment in Social Work
  • Empowerment in the Art of Creating
  • The Art of Empowerment
  • Empowerment in Art
  • Empowerment Artwork
Martin Luther King, 1964. Author: Nobel Foundation
Martin Luther King, 1964. Author: Nobel Foundation

“We must discover the power of love, the power, the redemptive power of love. And when we discover that we will be able to make of this old world a new world. We will be able to make men better. Love is the only way.” Martin Luther King, Jr.

The empowerment of the individual is the backbone of a society or nation. With Individual Empowerment comes People Empowerment which extends to Group Empowerment. Community Empowerment is a result of more empowerment of people and groups in a community.

The fabric of that community is strengthened as more individuals and groups of people become strong in their resolve to solve their own situations from a greater mindset that they are equipped to handle their own affairs. And that they have the ability to make better decision making determination and choices of their own. Or can manage their affairs by getting right solutions from themselves or others. The most important aspect is that they are in control.

Empowerment comes about as they grow and develop through education, training, and learn skills in their different areas of activity as well as managerial skills to employ the best strategies involved.

Empowerment Quotes

Sharing Empowerment Quotes to enable a stronger and more confident self, controlling one’s life and claiming one’s rights. Thereby gaining the freedom and power to do what you want or to control what happens to you.

Bill Gates in Berlin (2013). Author: www.dts-nachrichtenagentur.de
Bill Gates in Berlin (2013). Author: www.dts-nachrichtenagentur.de

As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” Bill Gates.

Power can be taken, but not given. The process of the taking is empowerment in itself.” Gloria Steinem.

Be of service. Whether you make yourself available to a friend or co-worker, or you make time every month to do volunteer work, there is nothing that harvests more of a feeling of empowerment than being of service to someone in need.” Gillian Anderson.

“Education remains the key to both economic and political empowerment.” Barbara Jordan.

Empowering the individual means empowering the nation. And empowerment is best served through rapid economic growth with rapid social change.” Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

As an independent artist, you control the means of production, which is the ultimate form of empowerment.” K. Flay.

Technology is the foundation of the empowerment economy.” Elise Stefanik.

Saving our planet, lifting people out of poverty, advancing economic growth… these are one and the same fight. We must connect the dots between climate change, water scarcity, energy shortages, global health, food security and women’s empowerment. Solutions to one problem must be solutions for all.” Ban Ki-moon.

The goal of each EarthEcho Expedition is to inspire and empower youth around the world with the knowledge and tools to take an active role in protecting critical natural resources in their own communities.” Philippe Cousteau, Jr.

Deepak Chopra in November 2006, speaking at Yahoo. Author: Mitchell Aidelbaum
Deepak Chopra in November 2006, speaking at Yahoo. Author: Mitchell Aidelbaum

New Age values are conscious evolution, a non-sectarian society, a non-military culture, global sharing, healing the environment, sustainable economies, self-determination, social justice, economic empowerment of the poor, love, compassion in action, going beyond religious fundamentalism, going beyond nationalism-extreme nationalism, culture.” Deepak Chopra.

Empower Others Quotes

Empower Quotes transform our lives when used as affirmations or deep reflective thought, as a source of inspiration and motivation.

Marie Curie. Author: Henri Manuel
Marie Curie.
Author: Henri Manuel

“You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals. To that end each of us must work for his own improvement, and at the same time share a general responsibility for all humanity, our particular duty being to aid those to whom we think we can be most useful.” Marie Curie

You cannot plough a field by turning it over in your mind.” Anonymous.

He who hesitates is lost.” Proverb.

Fortune favors the brave.” Publius Terence.

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” Chinese proverb.

Nurture your mind with great thoughts, for you will never go any higher than you think.” Benjamin Disraeli.

First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do.” Epictetus.

Our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world as in being able to remake ourselves.” Mahatma Gandhi.

Men do less than they ought, unless they do all they can.” Thomas Carlyle.

We are still masters of our fate. We are still captains of our souls.” Winston Churchill.

Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do.” Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

Every artist was first an amateur.” Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Seek the lofty by reading, hearing and seeing great work at some moment every day.” Thornton Wilder.

Calvin Coolidge. Source: US National Archives & Records Administration (NARA)
Calvin Coolidge. Source: US National Archives & Records Administration (NARA)

Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not: the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.” Calvin Coolidge.

The Benefits of Empowerment

Oprah Winfrey at the White House for the 2010 Kennedy Center Honors
Oprah Winfrey at the White House for the 2010 Kennedy Center Honors

“What I learned at a very early age was that I was responsible for my life. And as I became more spiritually conscious, I learned that we all are responsible for ourselves, that you create your own reality by the way you think and therefore act. You cannot blame apartheid, your parents, your circumstances, because you are not your circumstances. You are your possibilities. If you know that, you can do anything.” Oprah Winfrey

People are in control of their own lives and destinies, decision-making, more innovative and more willing to take the initiative to solve problems on our own. They feel like they are impacting their group or community for the better. Their individual performance becomes part of a team working together for the common good of all concerned.

Participation is readily embraced as there is a spirit and atmosphere of shared accomplishment. The result is a more enhanced society. Management from top to bottom involving Government, non-government organizations, relevant agencies such as health care, utilities, and businesses are all united together in an effort to prosper human lives.

In every area of living, there is care for the environment, and being each others keeper. People show appreciation for one another and their achievement. The empowerment mind-set is tremendous. It affects everyone. Best of all, we can learn more and be thus more empowered, for empowerment is a skill and can be learned.

Our self-esteem grows, we become more confident to handle greater challenges in life. We can surmount the highest peaks, our lofty goals and gain satisfaction in a life well-lived as we inhabit this planet – earth – our universe.