Prevent. Protect.

“UNITE! Invest to prevent violence against women and girls” is the theme of this year’s campaign “Orange the World – 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence”  that starts on November 25, on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and Girls, and ends on December 10, on the International Human Rights Day. Unfortunately, violence against women and girls remains one of the most prevalent forms of human rights violations around the world.

This year, the EU Delegation to Serbia joins the global campaign of 16 days of activism against gender-based violence by promoting empowered women and through cooperation with the wider community against physical, verbal and/or socio-economic violence.

“Violence against women can happen anywhere. There is no safe place. Violence can happen even at home. Grim statistics show that one in three women has experienced sexual or physical violence globally, and it most often happens at home. We repeat this astonishing figure so often that we tend to forget about the real human tragedies behind it, we tend to forget to talk about our mothers, sisters, daughters, you and me”, said Plamena Halacheva, Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Serbia.

We invite you to follow our social media channels and take part in the campaign which starts on November 24 with the conference “Imagine a life without violence against women and girls” at the National Library in Belgrade, organized by the UN Women. The event is part of the regional project “Youth for Inclusion, Equality and Trust” and it is aimed at youth activism against gender-based violence in Serbia, highlighting the key role of youth in initiating future changes and encouraging youth-oriented initiatives with the ultimate goal of eradicating violence against women and girls.

Foto: REWOMEN – Evropsko žensko sećanje

Also, on November 27, in the EU Info Centre we are opening the exhibition “REWOMEN – European Women’s Remembrance” and we will present a mural by our street artist Jana Danilović. The REWOMEN exhibition was created as part of the EU program “Europe for Citizens – European Remembrance” implemented by the Archives of Vojvodina in cooperation with the Foundation “Novi Sad – European Capital of Culture” and 16 partner organizations from 10 countries.

The REWOMEN project marked the 20th anniversary of the adoption of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union through the creation and promotion of an international exhibition dedicated to the history of the Women’s Liberation Movement in Europe. With this exhibition, we want to draw attention to significant, but insufficiently visible historical milestones and changes in women’s human, political, social, economic and cultural rights. The movement for the liberation of women is one of the most significant movements for human rights in the 20th century and represents a common European history, beyond national frameworks.

Street artist Jana Danilović, who created the mural on the occasion of “16 days of activism”, received her PhD from the Faculty of Applied Arts in Belgrade and participates in several socially engaged art projects oriented towards marginalized and vulnerable groups. You will be able to watch a video about the creation of this mural on the social media accounts of the EU in Serbia.

Then, on November 28, we continue with the national conference “The right to inheritance – the path to gender equality and eradication of violence” which will be held in the Palace of Serbia in Belgrade, building on the previous initiatives on women’s right to inheritance launched within the EU program “Support to priority actions for gender equality”. The first presentation of the one-day conference will be the presentation of the recently prepared analysis on women’s rights to inheritance in Serbia as a path to equality and ending violence against women and girls.

Also, through the EU Instagram channel, you will be able to win books from Štrik Publishing House that have been translated as part of the editions Creative Europe “Her story is your story – universal values of European female literature” (The Years, Annie Ernaux and The Country Where One Never Dies, Ornela Vorpsi) and “Dangerous connections in European female literature” (Inheritance, Vids Hjorth).

Foto: Plavo pozorište

The “16 Days of Activism” campaign includes several important international dates, such as the International Day of Persons with Disabilities marked on December 3. On this occasion, in Belgrade, on December 4, the Blue Theatre will present the inclusive play I Psychi Tis Antigonis,  written and directed by Nenad Čolić. During the performance, a sign language interpreter will be available to the audience. The idea of equality, inclusivity and gender equality has always been one of the leading aspirations in the PLAVO Theatre.

This year, through the initiative “Redefining borders: Disabled Icons and their Global Influence”, we want to draw attention to the necessity of creating conditions for the social inclusion of disabled people through a series of exhibitions that promote their achievements, as well as an awareness campaign and training initiatives in cities throughout Serbia. This initiative is implemented in four cities, in Požarevac, Šabac, Vršac and Inđija.

The campaign begins in Novi Sad with the fourth Autonomous Festival of Women, focused on the topic “Media and violence against women”, bringing together art, drama, and music programs, as well as discussions through the forums “Violence after violence – institutions, media, public” (Biljana Srbljanović, Tanja Ignjatović, Iva Parađanin), “Deconstruction of gender stereotypes” with Dr Nada Padejski Šekerović and “Internet as a space for women’s liberation”. During the festival, the monodrama “I hate the theatre” by Milena Minja Bogavac will be performed.

Despite the strong wave of women’s voices and the increasing number of women’s networking initiatives made possible by the online environment, we are witnessing the promotion of extremely patriarchal and misogynist attitudes online and offline. Whether we are talking about media, pop culture or social networks women in these new digital spaces are anything but safe. As part of the live podcast Tampon zona in Niš, on November 28, we will try to find the causes of this phenomenon, as well as the mechanisms for solving them. Also, in Niš, there will be literary talks “Women create, incentivizing conversations with Marija Ratković”.