Sexual harassment is a global phenomenon of violence against women. Sexual harassment can take many forms; verbal, visual and physical. Sexual harassment is a criminal act that results in a negative development in any society and marginalizes the people affected by it. Sexual harassment is an act of violence that reduces the status of women and secludes them from the public.

Swedish Institute Alexandria with the help of its partners both regional and local; will carry out a series of activities to help better understand the drawbacks of this phenomena. The main partners in this initiative is the National Council for Women in Egypt, with whom the institute will address the recent developments in terms of the new laws to combat sexual violence as well as addressing the role of NGOs and civil society in combating this type of violence.

In cooperation with HarrassMap, Egypt, the institute will conduct a two days interactive workshop in Alexandria. The workshop will bring examples of how to combat sexual harassment from local NGO’s operating Egypt. Moreover the workshop will include a session by Walaa El Hawary, a young Egyptian female biker who has written a book about her experiences biking in the busy streets of Cairo. Participants in this workshop are youth ranging in age from 18 to 35.

The second workshop addresses the joint efforts between the government and the civil society. The National Council for Women, I Saw Harassment Initiative, the Ministry of Justice will cooperate together in a joint workshop. ABAAD is a NGO in Lebanon that will give insights to their work in involving and addressing the role of men to combat sexual violence. The participants in this workshop are coming from civil society organizations, religious leaders and media representatives.

The institute will moreover organise two interactive activities with the public. The first is a bike ride around Zamalek where the bike riders will be asked to wear t-shirts/caps/pins with the logo stop sexual harassment. There will be a second bike ride in Alexandria on the Cornish. The aim of the bike ride is to demonstrate the equal rights of citizens to safe public space free from harassment.

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The next episode of the institute’s TV debate, Voices from Egypt (Aswat min Masr) will be tackling the phenomena of sexual harassment. All who are interested to take part in this TV recording and discuss sexual harassment, can write to us on register@swedalex.org if they would like to attend. With this initiative the institute and its partners hope to raise awareness on the topic and the importance of eliminating sexual harassment.

 

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