Friends and Champions are taking action all over the world to say yes, SheDecides. Activities have taken place before SheDecides Day, during SheDecides Day and some are still to come! Scroll down or click through for further details. Did you have an event that is not listed? Fill out the form on the SheDecides Day page.
STILL TO COME:
australasia and pacific
STILL TO COME:
SheDecides Art Exhibition and Live Music
SheDecides Flagship Event
Location: 012 Central Precinct, Pretoria, South Africa
Date: 1 March 2018
Building sustainable leadership in East & Southern Africa with young people and politicians, the leaders of today and tomorrow.
SheDecides Champion Danish Minister for Development Cooperation Ulla Tørnæs and Leading Champion South African Minister of Health Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, supported by UNFPA ESARO, invited all SheDecides Champions and over 200 young people and politicians from East and Southern Africa to the SheDecides Day Flagship event held at 012 Central precinct, managed by City Property. This event marked the first anniversary of the SheDecides pledging conference and invites leaders from Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
SheDecides is a political movement with community support. In the first year, it has evolved from two words, to a pledging conference in Europe, to a global movement mobilising 36 champions and more than 40,000 friends. One year on, SheDecides is reaching all corners of the world. The Flagship event reflects that the movement is now building sustainable change with politicians and young leaders in Africa – the voters and leaders of the future – stepping forward to make sure that today, and in the future, every girl and every woman can decide what happens with her body.
The Flagship was focused on the three pillars of the SheDecides movement:
- Stand Up, Speak Out: Leaders in all countries standing up and speaking out for girls and women
- Change the Rules: Changing laws, policies and practices that stop girls and women from deciding
- Unlock Resources: Building capacity and increasing financial resources from governments and foundations
Bold, dynamic and challenging the status quo, the event featured TED style talks and panel discussions, art and performance, with highlights from MTV Shuga and Soul City. Before the main event on 1 March, there was an open meeting for civil society in the region to explore the potential of a Southern African SheDecides movement. Immediately before the Flagship event over 70 young people from the region met for a caucus; and the day after there was a a closed meeting for SheDecides Champions to discuss the future of the movement.
Programme here. Photos below courtesy of UNFPA ESARO.
Women's Rights in a Global Context: From Malibongwe to SheDecides
Location: Pretoria, South Africa
Date: 2 March
The Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in South Africa presented an invitation-only event at their residence in Pretoria, South Africa. 'Women's Rights in a Global Context: From Malibongwe to SheDecides' featured an intergenerational and international panel discussion reflecting on progress toward a world where SheDecides, without question.
The event marked the anniversary of the SheDecides Conference, and coincided with the SheDecides Day Flagship event in Pretoria. The event also marks the 28th anniversary of the Malibongwe conference in Amsterdam.
Taking Stock: Effects of the Global Gag Rule in Kenya One Year On
Location: Nairobi, Kenya
Date: 2 March
The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Kenya, together with the Center for Reproductive Rights Africa Programme and the Reproductive Health Network (the recipients of the SheDecides crowdfunding campaign by Rutgers) co-convened a stakeholders meeting in Nairobi to take stock of the effect of the Global Gag Rule in Kenya one year on. The event welcomed participants from key organisations working to advance access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health and rights, in line with the SheDecides manifesto.
SheDecides: Nairobi City Takeover
Location: Nairobi, Kenya
Date: 2 March All over the city
To mark SheDecides day, Maisha Youth Movement undertook activities all across Nairobi, more specifically at Railways, Kenya Archives and IMAX. The events used different art forms to tell stories of the challenges and victories that girls and women experience, especially when it comes to enjoying their reproductive rights and freedoms to control their own bodies. The activities included spoken word pieces, drag performances, and conversations on girls and women having the decision making power over their bodies, their lives, and their futures; without question.
The City Takeover culminated with SheDecides: The Evening Lights.
SheDecides: The Evening Lights
Location: State House Road, Nairobi, Kenya
Date: 2 March www.maishayouth.org
A culmination of the SheDecides: Nairobi City Takeover, the Maisha Youth Movement hosted an evening cocktail event; showcasing the happenings of the day with candid conversations with stakeholders from government, civil society, media, private sector, and NGOs about all the necessary steps that need to be taken to ensure that as a country Kenya can continue to promote and protect the reproductive rights of girls and women.
The event was an infusion of artistic poetry pieces and panel sessions that bring to light the reality of Kenya with SheDecides vis a vis the envisioned future of the SheDecides movement: a world where every girl and woman can decide what happens with her body, life and future. Without question.
Ladders Social Media Campaign
Location: Nigeria (online)
Date: 2 March
Ladders is an organization that 'increases the visibility of females and ensures their voices count', based in Nigeria. The organisation stood up and spoke out this SheDecides Day by embarking on a social media campaign using the hashtag: #SheDecides.
STAR FOR LIFE - Eenhana Secondary School
Date: 1 March
Students at Eenhana Secondary School in Ohangwena, Namibia put together an event in celebration of SheDecides Day around the theme: 'Speak out, be loud and say no to harmful practices'. The event was a collaborative, consultative activity at the school with young women and girls discussing what SheDecides means to them, and planning what actions and activities they can take to promote the agenda.
SheDecides Day HangOut: Stand Up, Speak Out - Take Action
Location: Kampala, Uganda
Date: 2 March
The Uganda Youth and Adolescents Health Forum (UYAHF) in partnership with the Belgium Embassy in Uganda presented 'HangOut' - an event marking SheDecides Day on 2 March 2018. SheDecides friends and champions in Uganda came together under the theme 'Stand Up, Speak Out Take Action' to highlight, leverage and catapult action to greater heights so that every girl and woman can decide what happens with their own bodies.
The HangOut was a free, open space where over 100 vibrant young women gathered to stand up, speak out and share personal experiences about exercising their rights, and created opportunities for them to participate in dialogue around policy and laws in the Ugandan context, particularly about creating a policy, legal and social environment supportive of a world where women and girls can decide about their bodies, lives and futures without question.. The event was inclusive of young women living with HIV, young women living with disabilities, survivors of sexual and gender based violence, young mothers, young refugee women and more.
At the event, the girls clearly noted that they "want to be empowered with accurate and appropriate sexuality education and information to guide their decision making and choices". They decried the poor policy and social environment that has made essential sexual and reproductive health and rights services inaccessible due to discrimination. They called for quality, dignity and affordable services, as well as as a fully functional law that brings to justice the perpetrators of sexual and gender based violence against women and girls.
To decide and to decide freely, the young participants noted that access to contraception, safe abortion services, HIV services, education, menstruation health facilities and a supportive policy environment that promotes the rights of girls and women are absolutely critical.
SheDecides Champion Patrick Mwesigye is founder and team leader of UYAHF. In a statement, Patrick said: "Many thanks to our partners that graced the HangOut with their presence, and spoke passionately on the promotion of the rights of women and girls and how they are stand up, speak out and take action".
Key partners included: Representatives from UNFPA Uganda #Embassy of the Netherlands in Uganda, Embassy of Sweden in Uganda, Norwegian Embassy Kampala, Danish Embassy in Kampala, Uganda Association of Gynecologists and Obstetricians, Center for Health Human Rights and Social Development, Parliament of Uganda, Marie Stopes International, Plan International Uganda Planned Parenthood Global and others.
"Together we are creating a new normal, we are righting the wrongs and we are unapologetic about defending the rights of women and girls to decide #WithoutQuestion."
One Year On: Planning a future where SheDecides
Location: UK Parliament Organised by International Planned Parenthood Federation
Date: 28 February
International Planned Parenthood Federation and Gareth Thomas MP presented a special event at UK Parliament to mark SheDecides Day. The event featured a performance of the SheDecides manifesto by London-based spoken word performer Ana Paz, and brought together politicians from all parties, as well as Friends of SheDecides, to explore how SheDecides can build political momentum and push for the UK’s strong leadership in supporting the fundamental human rights of women and girls through international development programmes as well as domestically.
Chaired by Gareth Thomas, MP the event featured a panel of speakers including IPPF's incoming Director General Designate, Dr Alvaro Bermejo, and Baroness Jenny Tonge, Chair of the APPG SRHR, plus more.
Livity presents SheDecides in Brixton
Location: Brixton, London, United Kingdom
Date: 2 March
Livity, a youth-led creative network, hit the streets of Brixton to spread the word about SheDecides. They engaged passers-by and talked about what SheDecides is all about - plus, they got members of the public to fill in placards about what the world looks like 'When SheDecides...' and shared across their social networks. Follow Livity on Instagram to check out their activity.
Wake Up For Women
Location: Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, London, United Kingdom
Date: 8 March RSVP essential
The Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the United Kingdom presents a breakfast reception to mark both International Women's Day and SheDecides Day.
Too many girls and women are denied the right to decide about their bodies, to decide whether to go to school, to decide their career path, and to decide how they want to participate in society. These rights are at the core of an equitable, fair society and are crucial to reaching the Sustainable Development Goals.
This event will honour global efforts to ensure that every girl and woman can decide her future for herself, whoever she is and wherever she is, without question.
Featuring: Mohsina Bilgrami, Regional Director for West Asia, Marie Stopes International
Fiona Coyle, Manager, SheDecides Support Unit
#SheDecides Rutgers Special: Baas in eigen buik
Location: Pakhuis de Zwijger Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Date: 2 March Facebook event here
To mark the first SheDecides Day, SheDecides Champion Rutgers organised a debate in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. In the spirit of standing up and speaking out, this event aimed to raise the interest and solidarity of young Dutch people for the SheDecides movement.
The debate began with the Dutch history from the perspective of strong women who struggled during the 60’s and 70’s for the right to decide freely and for themselves whether, when and how many children they have. They paved the path for Dutch women and girls today who have easy access to contraception and other reproductive health services. Rutgers and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs joined the debate, sharing their stories and efforts in the field of reproductive health services. Young Dutch feminists talked about the difficulties they face in their daily lives and how they feel connected with women worldwide who are hit by the effects of the Global Gag Rule.
The participants explored a number of key questions: how can they continue standing up and speaking out for the rights of women to have control over their own bodies, and how can everybody continue unlocking the resources she needs to decide?
Photographs from the event courtesy of Rutgers.
Access to Abortion
Location: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Date: 2 March
Students in Amsterdam organised a night of film and discussion, featuring a documentary about the access to abortion in the Netherlands and guided, informal discussions based around the SheDecides manifesto.
YouAct: Repeal the 8th Campaign
Location: Europe (online)
Date: 2 March Follow YouAct_Europe on Twitter
This SheDecides Day, 2 March, YouAct (the European Youth Network on Sexual and Reproductive Rights) stands with the women of Ireland, who continue to fight for their right to decide what to do with their bodies. Since the 8th amendment to the Irish constitution, the women of Ireland have been deprived of bodily autonomy, and forced to put their health and lives at risk under a draconian system which fails to recognise their right to safe and legal abortion. Irish women have been forced to leave their country in order to access the basic healthcare that they need, while others, prevented from leaving by migration status or lack of economic means, have been forced to stay, relying on a healthcare system that does not trust women.
YouAct endorses the mission statement of the SheDecides initiative, which states that ‘when She Decides, the world is better stronger, safer.’ With this in mind, we would like to dedicate our actions on this day to the women of Ireland.
YouAct are standing up and speaking out in support of Irish women’s ongoing fight for the right to decide; to decide to reject oppressive and draconian social mores and legislation, to decide what to do with their bodies, and finally, in May, to decide to Repeal the 8th Amendment.
YouAct will engage their members in sharing photos holding signs in support of the SheDecides movement relating to the Repeal the 8th campaign. The actions are dedicated to the women of Ireland to support their continuous fight for their right to decide what to do with their bodies. The photos collected will be shared on the YouAct website and social media channels.
Location: Cinetol (Tolstraat 182, 1074 VM), Amsterdam, Netherlands
Date: 2 March More info here
On 2 March, the Dutch organisation SheDebates hosted an event in Amsterdam about the accessibility of the abortion pill in the Netherlands.
The event launched by showing short clips of different documentaries surrounding the issue, and thereafter a debate took place. Three experts featured as part of the session:
- Monique Opheij - Olga Loeber -Lilit Zeltsburg
Lezing Lilianne Ploumen
Location: Roermund, The Netherlands
Date: 10 March More info here
SheDecides Champion, and founder of the movement, Lilianne Ploumen delivered a lecture about SheDecides at the Soroptimist club Mosaïk-Limburg. All proceeds from the event benefit the SheDecides crowdfund managed by Rutgers.
For more details (in Dutch), click here.
SheDecides...for pleasure. WIN.
SheDecides … for pleasure: WIN a year’s worth of female condoms on SheDecides Day!
The Female Health Company gave away 12 months’ worth of FC2 female condoms to two lucky winners on 2 March 2018. The winners just had to answer the question: What does the female condom mean to you? Does it make you feel more empowered? Has it allowed you to get more intimate with your partner because it creates more pleasure? Did it help your community cut the risks of HIV, STIs and unintended pregnancies?
On 2 March, FC2 announced the lucky winner - Faith Duncan from Nigeria!
Faith discovered the FC2 female condom with her husband and they never want to use anything else again! It brings comfort, ease, intimacy and pleasure while protecting them both. Faith wrote the following poem to reflect her experience with the FC2:
Eureka! I found the secret to cloud 9+
FC2 my condom queen.
You rule well in the affairs of sexual intercourse.
You are the most generous; equal and fair to both parties.
You make the marital act an ever sought after.
As much pleasure you give, you doubly provide the needed protection.
Never a dull moment with you!
You have given the woman the power to CHOOSE and PROTECT herself.
The room, you give to the man is unbelievable!
Above all, you have made protected sexual experience the most natural.
FC2 my sexual high! I hail thee.
The Female Health Company were the first company in the world to make available the female condom – which is the only triple protection device that protects women and their sexual partners from HIV, STIs and unplanned pregnancies, ensuring a woman can decide to plan her life as she sees fit.
More info here.
Access to medicines and care for women: the good practices
Location: World Health Organisation,
Date: 2 March
The Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Geneva presented a SheDecides Day special event at the World Health Organisation on 2 March. The event explored best practices around access to medicines and care for women, and included participation from:
- Nathalie Olijslager (The Netherlands)
- François Gave (France)
- Mariangela Simão (WHO ADG)
- Petra ten Hoope-Bender (UNFPA)
- Luisa Cabal (UNAIDS)
- Metin Gulmezoglu (HRP)
- Hans Vemer (CEO Concept Foundation)
SheDecides in Russia
Location: Moscow, Russia
Date: 2 March
To mark SheDecides Day, the embassy of the Netherlands in Moscow presented a small reception for public opinion leaders and media representatives featuring Dance4Life Ambassador Anouk Maas. The event aimed to bring more attention to the issues and challenges young people (especially girls) face in relation to their sexual health and rights in Russia, and highlighted the need to unlock resources and commit to a world where SheDecides.
Ministry of Women's Affairs Conference
Location: Kabul, Afghanistan
Date: TBC (Post-SheDecides Day)
Ms Delbar Nazari, Minister of Women's Affairs in Afghanistan and SheDecides Champion, is intending to hold a Women's Affairs Conference in Kabul to explore the SheDecides manifesto in the Afghan context. More details will be provided in due course.
Location: Social Support, Mumbai
Date: 3 March
Artists Anonymous and ReRight presented #NoWomanUnheard: a gathering of slam poetry and speakers who came together to say that every woman has the right to be heard, every woman has the right to decide. From disability rights activists, anti-FGM crusaders, maternity rights advocates, gender studies scholars, access to abortion groups and women's rights NGO workers, the event united a diverse, grassroots level cross-section of people committed to a future where #SheDecides, all coming together through the power of art.
Mumbai celebrated SheDecides Day on 3 March, a day after Holi, the festival of colours. The spirit of celebration spread across age-groups and communities as people gathered at the Fun Republic Social pledging support to #NoWomanUnheard, an event organised by ReRight Foundation and Artists Anonymous to spread the message of SheDecides.
This SheDecides Day event was all about listening to women’s voices reclaiming sexual and reproductive rights and amplifying them through the power of art. Reright’s co-founder Subarna Ghosh introduced the story and purpose behind the SheDecides movement as the simple message of the manifesto echoed through the huge gathering of Mumbaikers.
Raia, a young musician and coder spoke about the invisibility of women in technology before enthralling everyone with her composition. The first speaker for the evening was Surabhi Srivastava who spoke about running a podcast to end the stigma of abortion and her experience at Love Matters, an organization working for women’s sexual and reproductive rights. The next speaker was Priya Patil, a trans woman who has fought all adversities to get educated as a social worker and secured a job. In spite of being homeless for over a year, she decided to contest municipal elections so that she can work towards alleviating poverty and ensure trans rights.
The audience, ranging from 16-year-old school students to 60-year-old gender studies scholars, were equally inspired when the first spoken word performer and founder of Artists Anonymous, Shruti Ghosh took them for an imaginary walk through the park. Her piece entitled ‘The Park Bench Men’ is based on a young girl’s experience of harassment while a ‘revolution brews in her belly’ hit us hard.
The next two speakers shook everyone out of complacency and reiterated the need to define 'a new normal' by making sure SheDecides - everytime - without question. Insia Dariwala, co-founder of Sahiyo, gave the audience a moving account of how little girls as young as 7 undergo Female Genital Cutting, a practice meant to curb sexual desire and pleasure. She was followed by young disability rights activist Virali Modi, who narrated her experience of being molested by porters at a railway station since the place was not wheelchair accessible. Women decided to stand up and speak out to create a global community where we are all heard, and so SheDecides without coercion or manipulation.
Isha Joshi’s spoken word about the faces of different women who tell a different story brought a smile to many faces at this amazing gathering of almost a hundred people. Finally, Subarna Ghosh closed the night by speaking about upholding universal human rights even during crisis and at vulnerable moments so that women’s right to decide is never compromised. Young volunteers passionately pitched in resources and talent so that the evening went smoothly and could be captured on camera. Everyone present made new friends, reaffirmed the goal to create a safer, better and more equal world and promised to come together to create a community where no woman is unheard.
SheDecides India Launch
Location: CityWalk, Saket, New Delhi
The SheDecides movement is taking ground in India - and this event is the moment SheDecides India launches officially. Activists, artists, leaders and changemakers met for a night of energy, creativity and activity to celebrate the launch of the SheDecides movement in India. Hundreds gathered to express their solidarity and support for the movement that calls for everyone to protect, enhance and fulfil the fundamental rights of women and girls to decide about their bodies, their lives and their future. Without question.
Women Talk About Sex...Get Over It
Location: Raasta, Green Park, New Delhi, India
Date: 7 March 2018 Facebook event here
Love Matters India believes in enabling spaces for young people to have open, honest and non-judgmental conversations around love, sex and relationships so they can make informed choices about their sexual well-being, and have healthier and happier relationships.
To mark SheDecides Day, International Women's Day and the launch of SheDecides India, Love Matters India celebrated with the theme "Women talk about sex...get over it!". The event aimed to normalise the fact that women can and do talk about sex, pleasure, desire, pain, love, loss, and relationships.
The event included an open-mic for all women, regardless of their class, caste, sexual orientation, etc. to share their experiences, struggles, and wins related to talking about sex across diverse settings and spaces, using different formats including spoken word, storytelling, art, dance, etc.
Embrace: Music Justice Arts presents Voices in the silence
Location: Gulmohar Park Club, Green Park, New Delhi
Date: 10 March 2018
Voices in the silence was an evening that brings together different people, forms of art and the spoken word, representing a variety of voices that don't necessarily subscribe to the norm or oppression of the mainstream or set benchmarks of society.
It is about people who use their art form to tell us stories of strife and victory or just to tell us things that we seem to forget - particularly freedom of expression, issues of social justice or peaceful co-existence and diversity.
The event featured slam poetry, music, drag performances and conversations - breaking the silence for every girl, every woman - everywhere.
ARROW presents: A day for the Asia-Pacific region to stand up, speak out and say yes, SheDecides
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Date: 2 March
SheDecides is a movement that is critical to the Asia-Pacific region. To mark the first anniversary of the first SheDecides conference on 2 March 2018, the founding countries of SheDecides - Belgium, The Netherlands, Denmark along with Finland - supported an event from the Asian Pacific Research & Resource Centre for Women (ARROW) which brought together like-minded individuals, thought-leaders, champions, donors and the media to share their stories, the lived experiences of girls and women in the region and reaffirm the pledge for SheDecides regionally. The event featured participants from Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Maldives, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines and Vietnam.
The event featured an interactive ‘world café’, Ted style talks and panel discussions. The SheDecides manifesto was at the core of the programme, pushing the message that every girl and every woman – everywhere – should be free from oppression, coercion and harm. Her rights should be respected, and she should be able to access the full range of live-saving and life-affirming information and health care that she needs – when she needs it, without stigma or discrimination of any kind.
Read a full wrap of the event in Asian Correspondent - Time for women to reclaim their bodies: SheDecides movement fights for sexual rights.
Folk, cake and singalong: Reducing risks of unsafe abortions in rural and desert resident women and girls
Location: Mirpurkhas, Pakistan
Date: 2 March
The Peace Foundation, a non-governmental organisation in Pakistan, organised a gathering with friends of the organisation to mark SheDecides Day, welcoming several women groups and a total of 190 participants! The event featured a performance by a local folk singer and drummer, along with discussions around some of the issues facing girls and women in Sindh, Pakistan, including lack of resources and the increasing numbers of unsafe abortions in the region. Plus, participants in the event even cooked a SheDecides cake which you can see in the slideshow above, and you can check out a video from the event here.
#YES4HER: A Youth Summit in Manila
Location: Manila, The Philippines
Date: 2 March
A gathering for students and young people.
The Youth Empowerment Summit for Human Equality & Rights or '#YES4HER' was an initiative organised by the International Youth Council Pilipinas to mark SheDecides Day. The event was conducted in partnership the Asian Society of Social Improvement and Transformation (ASSIST), and Jose Rizal University (JRU) with institutional collaborators the National Youth Commission, the Department of Health, the Philippine Commission on Women, and the Population Commission. #YES4HER, which was held at the Jose Rizal University in Mandaluyong City, was attended by 200 students, youth leaders, and guests from various sectors.
The objectives of #YES4HER were to:
1. Identify the equity, equality, and rights issues of young people
2. Integrate gender equality, sensitivity and child rights principles among participants; and
3. Develop a manifesto on how to strengthen the reach and support for young key populations.
YES4HER: Youth Empowerment Summit for Human Equality and Rights
March 2, 2018
University Auditorium, Jose Rizal University
Read the full report here: IYC Pilipinas Press Release
SheDecides Day activities: Lebanese American University
Date: Lead up to SheDecides Day
SheDecides Champion Lina Abirafeh, the Director for Women's Studies in the Arab World at Lebanese American University, and her colleagues organised several events around SheDecides Day on and off campus. Organisers are carrying the SheDecides Manifesto around to all of their events between February and March in order to garner awareness and gather more support for the movement.
Screening of NOUR
NOUR is a feature fiction film written, directed and produced by Khalil Dreyfus Zaarour. It is about forced child marriage, based on true stories of girls forced into marriage at an early age. The director met dozens of women, listened to their accounts and adapted it to fit the screen, in order to address this critical issue.
Food 4 Thought: 'Misplaced Guilt'
Byblos and Beirut, Lebanon
Food 4 Thought is a monthly non-formal speaking series that is held in both Beirut and Byblos for the LAU community - all students, faculty, and staff. Sometimes it is also open to public.
SheDecides to vote: Panel Discussion
This panel discussion will be led by two leading gender and elections specialists in Lebanon, and will focus on bodily integrity within the electoral process: how she has the right to vote when she wants, and for who she wants.
Al-Raida Journal: SheDecides Special
IWSAW oversees an in-house journal called Al-Raida – the “pioneer” in Arabic – which publishes pieces about, and from Arab women, and on issues related to communities within the Arab region.
Mini research documents (1-2 pages) providing an overview of SheDecides-related legislation in the Arab States. This research will be done in collaboration with Gender 101 students from LAU Beirut.
#SheDecidesArabRegion / #SheDecidesMENA
Social Media Campaign / Using information from past and current research, IWSAW will manage and mobilize an online social media campaign on how She Decides applies in the Arab region.
IWSAW Occasional Paper Series: SheDecides Special
IWSAW’s Occasional Paper Series publishes work from a variety of authors located across the Arab region and abroad on issues related to the work that IWSAW does.
Love Matters Arabic Share the SheDecides Manifesto
When: 2 March, 2018 Follow here: https://www.facebook.com/LoveMattersArabic/
Love Matters Arabic, an organisation offering young Arabic speaking adults a virtual space where they can engage with issues relating to love, sex and relationships, presented a social media campaign for SheDecides Day. Love Matters Arabic, which is the first platform of its kind available in the Arabic language, shared the Arabic version of the SheDecides manifesto and created posters for social media to share across their network. The campaign brings Love Matters Arabic in to the movement, and uses the #SheDecides hashtag.
Location: Mexico DF, Mexico
Date: 28 de febrero, 2 de marzo
Joining forces with local government agencies, MEXFAM organised an event with teenagers and young people from Mexico City. The event was held in a cultural centre in a poor area east of the city, and it featured educational activities and offered sexual and reproductive health services for adolescent women as well as sports and cultural activities. The event focused on three fundamental rights of girls and young women: education, health and access to a life free of violence.
México se suma a la conmemoración del movimiento She Decides con actividades encaminadas a difundir el movimiento y su manifiesto en medios de comunicación y con las mujeres jóvenes del país.
El 28 de febrero se realizará una rueda de prensa en la que personalidades de la academia, los derechos humanos y el deporte, firmarán públicamente el manifiesto y hablarán de su importancia para el fortalecimiento los derechos de las mujeres y las niñas mexicanas.
El 2 de marzo, se realizará una activación con adolescentes y jóvenes de la Ciudad de México. Sumando esfuerzos con instancias del gobierno local, el evento se realizará en un centro cultural al oriente de la ciudad, que atiende a sectores marginados de la población juvenil.
La activación es una suma de actividades educativas, oferta de servicios de salud sexual y reproductiva para mujeres adolescentes y actividades deportivas y culturales. El eje del evento son tres derechos fundamentales para las niñas y las mujeres jóvenes: la educación, la salud y el acceso a una vida libre de violencia.
Estas actividades se acompañarán con una campaña en redes sociales que arrancará la última semana de febrero.
One year anniversary of SheDecides
Location: Washington DC
Date: 1 March
In Washington DC a major event was held at the Embassy of Denmark in the United States. The event was co-hosted by the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA), Guttmacher Institute, the Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE), and Population Action International (PAI). With over 170 in attendance the event brought together a cross-section of people who support SheDecides including US activists, ambassadors from Sub-Saharan Africa and Europe, and others.
Danish Ambassador Lars G. Lose set the time of the celebration in his opening remarks when he said, “The Danish government firmly believes that girls and women decide over their bodies, their lives and their futures. With rights for everyone. With education for everyone. With healthcare to everyone. We are all better off.” He added, “What started as a pledging conference in Brussels one year ago has turned into a global, political movement.”
SheDecides Champion Julia Bunting shared the podium with Ambassador Lose and highlighted the benefits to women, communities and the world when women’s rights and development – particularly bodily autonomy – are prioritised.
The event has highlighted by a presentation by spoken word artist Christine Hayes and two interactive breakout sessions. One was hosted by Serra Sippel of CHANGE and Achieng Akumu, of PPFA and addressed the future of SheDecides. Sippel said, “That’s why a movement like SheDecides is so important. As the US moves backwards with failed policies, SheDecides steps forward by rallying donors, building solidarity and mobilising for action for gender equality and empowerment of all women and girls.” Akumu added that sexual and reproductive health and rights are essential to not only human rights, but economic development.
The other session was hosted by Ann Starrs of the Guttmacher Institute and Suzanne Ehlers of PAI and focused on “Five things we learned about SheDecides.” Starrs and Ehlers began by mentioning that while SheDecides was catalyzed by the Global Gag Rule the framing is now broader, and SheDecides is uniquely bold and assertive in using the rights of women and girls as its central frame. They concluded by observing that SheDecides offers an unprecedented and invaluable platform for grassroots mobilization around sexual and reproductive health and rights globally – an opportunity our community has not had before.
#Fight4HER in Durham
Location: Durham, New Hampshire, US
Date: 2 March
#Fight4HER is fighting to change the rules in support of girls and women, specifically focused on taking action against Trump’s Global Gag Rule. On SheDecides Day, the organisers of #Fight4Her held an event at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, designed to inform students about how they can stand up, speak out and take action in their community in support of her right to decide.
She is You: SheDecides Art Exhibition and Live Music
Location: Melbourne, Australia
‘She is You’ is an art exhibition and concert curated and programmed by Melbourne-based artist Nik Ranger. The exhibition will combine live animation, sound art and illustration, featuring champions of the SheDecides movement and local changemakers, while the concert will include a line up of trailblazing female identifying musicians who are leading advocates for the right for every person to decide about their own body.
More info coming soon via the Dada Ono Facebook page.