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Gender Equality Festival: How was the 12th edition?

The 12th edition of the Gender Equality Festival took place in Sibiu between 21st and 23rd of September, an event for preventing gender discrimination and violence, organized by the Association for Liberty and Gender Equality – A.L.E.G., an organisation supporting women and children, victims of domestic violence.

Ziua Paci_Lant uman © dragos dumitruOn the 21st of September, the A.L.E.G. volunteers have marked the International Peace Day taking up the motto “Until there is peace for every woman” and forming a human chain to get the community’s attention on the need to take attitude against acts of violence. The International Peace Day was also marked by using stencils on the Horizontal Wall together with Dan Perjovschi and the A.L.E.G. team.

On the 22nd of September, approximately 80 high school students watched the Movie Girl Power, an event made possible with the collaboration of One World Romania. The movie depicts the life of girls and women passionate about graffiti in a predominantly masculine environment. This was followed by the first time Romanian projection of the movie “Have I told you I have been abused”, which won the State Excellency Award in Serbia, 2009.

The movie is based ont the accounts of young women which have been abused during childhood and stresses upon the fact that most sexual abuses take place in families and remain hidden years on end. The participants had the opportunity to discuss with the creator of the movie, Dušica Popadić from Incest Trauma Center from Belgrade about the ways in which we can protect children and youngsters. Dušica Popadić talked about the collaboration of their organization with the Ministry of Education for preventing abuse through several school subjects, from the earliest age.

Concurs In a RelationshipOn the 23rd of September, the young researchers from the „In a Relationship” project realized in 2016 by AVON and the Foundation Friends for Friends, Andrei Stupu and Diana Smeu presented the results of the national study they applied on the subject of teenagers and their relationships. The results show that a lot of teenagers go through abusive relationships without even knowing that it is abuse in the first place. The conclusions from the  research were illustrated through an exposition hosted by the Gong Theater which includes the creations of teenagers between 16-18 years from 8 cities in Romania.

The day continued with the contest “In a Relationship”: 15 high school students went through different practical exercises on assertive communication, recognizing different forms of abuse but also amusing tasks of practical skills through which they could demonstrate breaking the roles of women and men. At the event participated 5 representatives from The Platform for Gender Equality from The Republic of Moldova remarking: „The active involvement of young people from all over the country (including in activities of social research) is a perfect example of a good case practice which we want to implement back home – in the Republic of Moldova.”

Teatru forum_AThe festival ended with a theater forum show entitled “The party at the cabin”. The A.L.E.G. volunteers create in an yearly basis different scenarios through which they get to showcase to their generation peers about the causes and the form of gender violence, encouraging them to take attitude whenever they witness a sexism or violence manifestation.

“Like every year, the show was a success, bringing the message close to the spectators. I hope it offered a different perspective on couple and relationship issues to all the spectators like it did for me!” (Iulia R., spectator). During such a play, the spectators have the chance to intervene by replacing the actors and to propose changes in the actions and the behavior of the actors thus avoiding a situation of gender violence.

“The Gender Equality Festival is an important pillar in the fight against violence and I appreciate that you at the 12th edition.As we speak, there are young people around us in action and this aspect is very important: they can practically understand what domestic violence and gender equality means. Continue to play an important part in the fight for dignity and keep on paying if forward“ was the message from Alexandra Maier, the coordinator of social campaigns at AVON, present at the events.

The Gender Equality Festival – XIIth edition is an action financed by the Local Municipality and Council from Sibiu and co-financed by AVON.

The Festival in images

Gender Equality Festival: Sibiu, 21st-23rd of September

The Gender Equality Festival comes back on the 21st-23rd of September with an anniversary edition, the 12th edition!

The festival was the launching event of the Association of Liberty and Gender Equality – A.L.E.G. back in 2004 and since then it has remained one of the yearly recurring activities through which A.L.E.G. promotes in Sibiu’s community, especially among young persons, European values such as: equality between women and men, respect in relationships, tolerance and non-violence.Colaj FEG

We are different but equal”, ”I will never be anybody’s victim” were the messages created by the letter-volunteers, becoming a symbol of the festival. This year, taking into account the fact that we are witnessing an increase in violence and hatred, the festival marks The International Peace Day alongside the Women Against Violence Europe – WAVE Network and it will approach especially the issue of peace – at home and in the world - ”until there will be peace for every woman”.

The Gender Equality Festival is a campaign which encourages young persons to think „outside the box”, the TV-box or the mart-phone-box, to be able to identify the stereotypes which lead to violence and gender discrimination. We do this through social theater where spectators propose solutions, through film viewings and debating them and through street actions.

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The program for this year includes on the 21st of September the Human Chain for Peace Day, on the 22nd the first projection of the most known movie from the ex-Yugoslavian space which tackles the topic of sexual abuse – “Have I told you I have been abused?” for which we have as a guest the founder of the Incest Trauma Center from Belgrade, Dušica Popadić and on the 23rd of September the campaign and the contest “In a Relationship”, in collaboration with AVON.

The detailed program can be accessed on the Facebook event here.

Details about A.L.E.G. you can find on www.aleg-romania.eu

The Gender Equality Festival, the XII-th edition is a project financed by the Local Council and Municipality of Sibiu through the Community Agenda.