Millen Magese is our #IWD2016 woman crush

Tanzanian born super model Millen Magese is one hell of a woman.

With a career that has spanned a decade and several continents and modelling contracts with Ice Models South Africa and Ford Models New York, Magese’s charm and talent has allowed her work with some of the biggest designers in the world.

Magese along with Oluchi Onweagba Orlandi, Charlize Theron and Agbani Darego are considered Africa’s original supermodels. With that much clout and influence, it was then quite the surprise last year when Magese decided to go public with her life long battle with the medical condition Endometriosis, a cogenital deformation of the female reproductive system that results in chronic pain and infertility.

 

But it wasn’t easy for Magese to go public with her struggle, it took her nearly 12 years since she was diagnosed to summon the courage to speak out, after she was inspired by Nigerian actress Rita Dominic’s own efforts to raise awareness about the condition.

“It has been 10 years since my diagnosis, and it has taken a total of 12 surgeries, multiple attempts to reopen my blocked fallopian tubes, a non-functional ovary, miscarriages, and three IVF egg-retrieval procedures during one IVF cycle for me to speak out.”

 

But given the opportunity to put her support and influence behind a cause so personal to her, Magese worked past her concerns and joined the battle head on. Magese has always looked to give help where she could, supporting various charities and initiatives in Africa all through her career, including the Ethiopian Children’s Fund, the Red Cross, UNICEF, the African Literary Project and the Macdella Cooper Foundation in Liberia. She has brought her giving back home to Tanzania, where she created the Millen Magese Foundation.

We are thankful for Millen Magese opening her private struggles to millions of women and giving them the push they need to get tested and manage Endometriosis. That kind of courage is rare.

Happy International Women’s Day Millen! We applaud you.

Find Millen’s interview about her fight with endometriosis here.

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