Selam Ethiopia’s Initiatives to Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women Artists

Where
Ethiopia
When
2020
Who
Selam Ethiopia, info@selam.se / samuel@selam.se, +251911395963
This measure was reported by civil society.
Describe the main features of the measure/initiative: 
In August 2018, two large culture forums were conducted in the cities of Mekelle and Bahir Dar with the common focus on increasing dialogue and exchange of ideas to contribute to the development of the Ethiopian culture sector. Key to the conversations was the value of international exchange to promote innovative thinking and to make use of experiences within common challenges and developments for culture sectors and culture actors across national borders. In Mekelle, the forum was organized together with Rahel Art Gallery, one of the project’s partners. The forum made use of the ongoing celebration of the “Ashenda Festival”, an annnual holiday focusing on young girls and women. This thematic also led the way for panel discussions that highlighted a variety of perspectives on gender equality and women’s right, as well as on how culture is able to play a crucial role within these issues – and therefore should be further strengthened. SELAM culture forum was also hosted in Bahir Dar, Amhara Region on August 27, 2018, with key partners in the region, Amhara Culture and Tourism Bureau, and Mulualem Culture Center. The Bahir Dar forum was organized under the theme of ‘Strengthening Social interaction Through Culture Expressions’. The panel discussion had four different topics that were suggested by the partners as important cultural development issues that need focus within the region. The topics in the forum were: ○ Roles and challenges for female artists in the cultural sector; ○ Strengthening social interactions through cultural expressions; ○ The Making of Bahir Dar city a city of festivals; ○ The role of the media in the cultural sector “I have a dream”, one of the two circus productions and tours planned for 2019, was produced and executed by Circus Debre Berhan (CDB). 18 young artists were involved both in the production tour of the circus. The main objective of the tour was to raise awareness and promote equal opportunity for girls in various socio-economic activities within local communities. In January 2019, the circus team received capacity building training in scriptwriting, directing, choreography, as well as stage management by external and internal resource persons. Succeeding the successful completion of the production of the circus, CDB has prepared a tour plan in Amhara, Addis Ababa, and SNNPR. “I have a Dream'' was performed in 8 cities of the Amhara region and 5 cities of SNNPR specifically, in Debre Markos, Bahir Dar, Gondor, Lalibela, Wolldia, Dessie, Kombolcha, and ShowaRobit, Hosa’ena, Durame, Halaba, Arbaminch, and Hawassa. A total of 30 (14 in Amhara and 16 in SNNPR) shows were performed at universities, high schools, and marketplaces of these towns. The overall turnout for these shows was estimated at about 4,821 females and 111,306 males.
What are the results achieved so far through the implementation of the measure/initiative?: 
- Awareness was created at the community level where both genders should have access to the same opportunities at an economic, sociological, health-care, and educational level. - Women artists have got the opportunity and platform to express themselves and their challenges. - Government bodies and stakeholders were urged to take action on supporting women artists.
Goal(s) of UNESCO's 2005 Convention
Cultural Domain(s)
Multi-domain