Australian model Jennifer Atilémile wants the world to be a better place. A sweet sentiment, no doubt, but finding the endurance to maintain that intention, not to mention putting it into action, is what separates her motivation from the performative Instagram posts that bubbled up during 2020, then quickly tapered off. Perhaps it’s a mix of her background (she studied international relations and journalism before her modeling career took off) with global context (she’s travelled all over for her work) that keeps the New Yorker focused on activism. “Human rights abuses and systemic inequality should be given more effort in discussion,” she says. “The more we talk about it, the more awareness is raised.”
Settling in the United States has placed the Aussie at the center of a sea change that’s deepened her conviction to hold those in her industry accountable for toxic dynamics. “Now that the world is returning to a new normal, I’m more conscious of the brands that I work with and aware of their ethos,” Atilémile says. “I’m pretty opinionated…I’ll discuss light-hearted topics such as Love Island, but I’m also going to talk about what’s wrong in the world. These shouldn’t be topics that are only discussed behind closed doors or swept under the rug.”
Facing the injustices of the world head on while living in a foreign country during a global pandemic has forced a new agenda of healing, self-evaluation, and growth for Atilémile, which she discusses with Rose Inc, ahead.
In addition to that, I’ve also found my joy in writing. I feel as though I can put my emotions to the page and it’s extremely therapeutic. I feel as though I’ve had so many breakthroughs; I’m able to go back and reflect on the past and see how it has affected me now. I’m instantly able to recognize situations which I can now discuss and walk through with my therapist. It’s been amazing.
THE MORE WE TALK ABOUT IT, THE MORE AWARENESS IS RAISED…
… I GOT MY FIRST GREY HAIR LAST YEAR. INSTEAD OF FREAKING OUT, I DECIDED TO JUST EMBRACE IT…
I’VE JUST REALIZED THAT I’M BEAUTIFUL AS I AM.