About the founder

"The biggest lie I ever told myself was that I am not enough"

Hi! I’m Charlene,
The founder of AVOW.

Firstly, the biggest of thank you’s for joining me, and all the women in our community at AVOW. Together, we will learn, teach and empower each other to step into our own truth and knowing of self.

From a young age, I really struggled with the perception of my own value and worth.

I felt an intense hatred for myself and wished I could be different or better.

I went through primary school severely overweight and self-conscious, feeling unloved and unseen.

As I moved into high school, I quickly went from one extreme to the other by succumbing to Anorexia.

I hit my lowest weight of 39 kgs and was so mentally and physically exhausted - yet still not feeling any different about myself.

I went from one form of abuse to another.

I was literally killing myself.

I was lost in a sea of misguidance, external pressure and emotional chaos. I had no idea how to love or respect myself or how to honour my body.

Everywhere around me were these unrealistic, unhealthy ideals, and I thought that if I could “reach” them, then I would finally feel better about myself.

Boy, was I wrong. It didn’t matter what size I was, or what I weighed, I was always consumed with the feeling of not being enough.

Then one day, my body, mind and soul reached their limit. Life presented me with a wake-up call, jolting me into realisation.

I remember it like it was yesterday, I passed out in the shower, collapsing unconscious.

My body had finally given up...  

"I didn't want to hurt my body anymore."

"I didn't want to hurt my body anymore."

I woke to paramedics and my mother sobbing “wake up, wake up”.  This is exactly what I did.

It was there and then I said to myself, “no more, this is not worth dying for”.

I didn’t want to hurt my body anymore.

I wanted to love it, I wanted to nurture it, I wanted to be friends, not enemies

I knew then, that I could not sit idly and watch another young girl, naively fall victim to this, like I had. In some way, I needed to contribute to breaking this cycle.

But from there, it really only just manifested into another version of self-destruction.

I entered a string of three abusive relationships.

One literally led to the next.

I spent 10 years in my last relationship, enduring every possible form of domestic abuse. I was once again completely lost.

My life was a rollercoaster and I felt like I could not get off.

And then, the Universe delivered another wake-up call.

I fell pregnant.

And like a switch, it all began to change, permanently.

It was there and then that I decided that there was no way on Earth would I let my innocent little child witness or experience the abuse, torment or turbulence I was enduring.

There was no way in the world that I was ever going to repeat or perpetuate that vicious cycle.

When giving birth to my son, I also gave birth to my unwavering innate strength and self-awareness.

He is the catalyst of my remembrance of who I am and why I am here.

Through my darkness, I found my brightest light and with that the desire to help, inspire and awaken all that which is in every woman.

That’s why I created AVOW. It is my labour of love.

It is my way of inspiring, empowering and nourishing the body, mind and soul of all women.

Help women to initiate their own healing journey.

Remind them to listen to the whispers of their soul, reclaim their self-belief and live their truth.

Inspire them to look at the way they talk to themselves, see themselves and to challenge, change and reprogram their inner dialogues.

Help women know their undeniable worth and show them that they are more than enough, just as they are.

Encourage them to love, honour and respect their bodies.

Nourish and nurture themselves.