Eat that, sexism!

Sexist advert at Tbilisi airport On the Tbilisi airport a sexist commercial, complete with headless woman, welcomes visitors. Fortunately me and my colleagues from Kvinna till Kvinna’s South Caucasus team  are going to spend this week planning a new regional strategy to improve women’s rights in South Caucasus.

We believe that feminism and hard work will make OUR dreams come true!

 

Proud to be a woman – in Kosovo

Living in Kosovo entails in itself facing many difficulties on daily basis in all spheres of life, and as a woman, these life difficulties become even more apparent.

However there are days when all the life difficulties disappear, vanish from the face of earth and all what is left within is strong feelings of love, solidarity, accomplishment, inspiration … Today was one of these days. Not an ordinary day.  A day when something happens, and one feels moved. Today was one of the four days of the regional feminist festival “Femmes Fatales” in Prishtina organised by our partner organisation Artpolis, with participants from Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia.

This festival has given me lots of emotions through performances, photo exhibitions, documentaries, poetry, music – all produced by women.

Courageous women who told their stories … their war … their dreams!

Women who enabled these stories to be heard … shedding light into women’s lives, women’s issues, women’s rights and building bridges of understanding, solidarity and friendship across ethnic, gender and other boundaries and YES, making a change!

Inspiring women who made me forget the difficulties … women who made me proud to be a kvinna in Kosovo, proud to have been working jointly with them  kvinna till kvinna (woman to woman).

Text and Photos: Yllka Soba/Kvinna till Kvinna – Field Office Kosovo

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Ana Ćurčin – ACT Women, Serbia.

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Photo exhibition on violence against women “You don’t kill a woman this way” by artists from Albania, Montenegro, Canada.

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Documentaries and launching of “Beyond HIStory” – Kosovo Oral History Initiative Website by Kosovo Women’s Network, Kosovo and New School University,US (www.oralhistorykosova.org)

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Presentations and discussions – Activism and Art in the Balkan region.

 

 

 

International Women’s Day – touring the globe for inspiration

Petra befinner sig just nu i Yerevan där hon samarbetar med Women Resources Centre Armenia  (WRCA) under 10 månader. Vi kommer kunna följa hennes arbete och reflektioner här på bloggen.Facebook event header

Nu är jag på plats i Armenien och har börjat etablera mig på Women’s Resources Center Armenia (WRCA). Det är mycket på gång just nu, i förberedelserna inför Internationella Kvinnodagen har en feministisk plattform mellan olika organisationer och aktivister startats och det är många idéer som bollas. 8 mars har ju så många olika ansikten, en dag för protest mot orättvisa och ojämställdhet, en dag för firande av systrar, mödrar och dottrar, en dag för politiska aktioner, aktivism, demonstrationer och events. Jag blev ombedd att ge exempel på hur Internationella kvinnodagen manifesteras globalt för att ge en inspirationsinjektion i förberedelserna.887303_10153714053620012_1132849633_oHär kan ni se presentationen i form av bilder, tyvärr utan ordflöde, men “en bild säger mer än 100 ord”?

Visar också lite bilder från en tidigare marsch och aktion mot våld i hemmet som WRCA arrangerade i November tillsammans med andra organisationer som ingår i koalitionen “Stop Violence Against Women”. Enligt en relativt färsk undersökning känner varannan här i Armenien någon i sin omedelbara närhet som drabbats av våld i nära relationer.

 

BeFem 2013 edition

BeFem – the yearly feminist festival in Belgrade!
BeFem – where you meet the coolest crowd of Balkan feminists!

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BeFem – where else in the region could you attend a lesbian talk show or a feminist poetry slam performance?

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BeFem – where activism against patriarchy is nurtured.
BeFem – the place that welcomed the performance “Internally Displaced” about war rapes in Kosovo.

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BeFem – my first experience of Qeer Salsa dancing and activist knitting!
BeFem – so cool, refreshing, inspiring and empowering!
Befem 2014 – I’m telling you – be there or be square!

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Check it out yourself at Facebook!

Text and photos: Lina Andéer/Kvinna till Kvinna

Young feminists in Kosovo set a good example

“Mrs President we ask from you to implement the recommendations we have written during the Regional Young Feminist Forum” said a student, Fjolla Vukshinaj in a confident voice at a meeting hosted by the President of Kosovo, Atifete Jahjaga. Sometimes, the strength that comes from within the young women is surprising and inspiring at the same time. And I thought to myself, this is the new spirit of the women’s movement, this is what we should continue focusing on, support and empower.

 

Photo by the Photographer of the Kosovo Presidency

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The Green Mountain

“Gendering the Egyptian Revolution” was not an easy subject to talk about. We had to tell the stories of women who fought before the revolution, who paved the way to things to happen” Doa Abdelaal Mohamed Mostafa. Photo: CURE

When I first got the invitation from Marija to attend PitchWise 2013 in Sarajevo I sat for 10 minutes starring at my screen. I had millions of thoughts in my head, which included of course issuing the visa, taking days off from work, but what topped my thoughts was how come I still feel this pain when I hear or read the name of the city.

Back in the 1990’s when I was an undergraduate student in Cairo University, the war in what is known then as Yugoslavia was one of the preferable topics for our professors to discuss. I remembered the endless discussions, the papers and the exams but mostly the pain.

What we were discussing was WAR, people dying, tortured and raped. The fear that thousands of women lived in and faced was scary for me. In a war, you are a killing machine or a victim nothing in between and either this or that you seize to be a human and your instinct to survive suppress any other feelings.

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