We chatted with Katherine Schwarzenegger about the upcoming election and how important it is for young people to make sure their voices are heard.
Katherine Schwarzenegger, 26, teamed up with TJMaxx on their “Road to Real” campaign, where she interviewed 500 women across the country in TJMaxx stores, compiling the interviews and the footage for a gallery exhibit which was unveiled in NYC on Sept. 27. We got to catch up with Katherine about the inspiring project, who told us how her mother’s journalism background paved the way for her work on the campaign. “I learned everything and how I do everything from my mother and my father,” she said. “My mom [Maria Shriver] was able to talk to people so naturally and I watched her do that growing up, I watched her talk to complete strangers so this felt very natural to me and I’m naturally a very curious person. The idea that I could go around the country and talk to over 500 different women about their lives and how they live their lives and where they get their inspiration from felt very natural to me. Giving a voice to these amazing women was such a gift for everybody involved. I feel very blessed to have been a part of it.”
As Katherine interviewed women from all walks of life she was moved by how willing they were to open up to her and how important it was for them to be heard — a theme that’s definitely being echoed in the current political climate of the country. “Getting out anf voting is the most important thing. People, especially in this election, are very frustrated with what’s going on in America and what’s going on in the world and it’s really important to remind people that their vote matters, their voice matters. They can and will be heard.”
Katherine admitted that she finds it “so frustrating” when she hears her peers say that their vote doesn’t matter. “It was the opposite of how I was raised. Voting gives you the power to say this is how I want to live my life and this is how I think our country should be run. The more we can empower young people and, especially young women, to go out and vote and to ensure them that their voice will be heard is the most important thing.”
The grounded author added that education should begin at home. “Every single night we would have family dinner and we would go over what’s going on in the world and we would be really educated about it. My parents did a really good job at that. You know, it’s important to know what’s going on in your own backyard.”
For more on Katherine’s inspiring work with the “Roal to Real” campaign watch the video above.