In 2018, Aswat Nissa participated in the international campaign of 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence, that started on the 25th of November (on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women) and ended on the 10th of December (on the Human Rights Day). These sixteen days of activism were a great opportunity to raise awareness on violence committed against women, and to act to eliminate such violence. We successfully organized many activities, such as a solidary picnic, an introductory class to self-defense and the launch of a feminist Book Club.
As part of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, Aswat Nissa organized a solidary picnic in the Belvedere Park. This event gathered many participants in a safe space where they could freely share their experiences and their opinions on the application of the Organic Law relative to the elimination of violence against women (and its necessary funding), on the importance of education, and on gender stereotypes present within the Tunisian society. A psychologist and a legal expert were present to support the survivors and to enrich the conversation. This picnic encouraged many women victims of acts of violence to testify. Aswat Nissa received a number of calls afterwards from women victim of violence: we oriented them towards specialized centers.
On the 7th and 8th of December, we organized two free introductory classes of self-defense for women and girls. Each class lasted for two hours and was given by an instructor in kick-boxing, Fahmi. The classes started with a focus group so as to allow participants to share experiences and past insecurities.
The goal was to raise awareness on acts of violence committed against women and on the general feeling of insecurity felt by women in public places.
On December 10th, Aswat Nissa launched its feminist Book Club. To end the 16 days of activism, Aswat Nissa launched an event that would continue throughout the year. The December 10th event was an occasion for Aswat Nissa to present itself and to receive reading propositions for its Book Club. The first selected book was a short novel by Fatima Mernissi, a Moroccan writer, sociologist and feminist. The Book Club will meet in January 2019 to talk about Dreams of Trespass: Tales of a Harem Girlhood.
Aswat Nissa also pressed for the true implementation of the Organic Law relative to the elimination of violence against women. Aswat Nissa asks for more transparency from the government and for the adoption of a gender-sensitive approach in public policy and in budgeting.
You can read our article in French by clicking on this link.