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PEOPLE+ | KA2 “Standing up 2 FGM” | First coordination meeting, Tunisia

The first coordination meeting of the KA2 project “Standing up 2 FGM” took place in Hammamet, Tunisia in the period 16-21 February 2019. Representatives from each one of the partner organizations (from Bulgaria, Macedonia, Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, Germany and United Kingdom) met to plan the following activities of the two years project.

The project aims to develop the skills of young people in the field of human rights in the Mediterranean, through practical sessions in the promotion of human rights in general and the rights of women in particular through their empowerment in society. Participants in the project will have an opportunity for Common Dialogue, state studies, capacity building, exchange of experiences, knowledge and skills. The activities planned in the project include non-formal leading methodology, learning by doing, job shadowing’s, creation of workshop, training of trainers and coordination meetings. The project will build strong relationship between organizations in Europe and Tunisia. It will create a network of organizations from Europe and Arabic countries in the area of fighting FGM (Female genital mutilation).

On the first day of the meeting, the partners got the know each other better, represented themselves and their organizations and their role in the project. They’ve talked about the situation with the FGM and women rights and the violence against women in their countries and the most common problems and fears among women. They’ve found many similarities connected with the topic in all of the partners countries and came to the conclusion that something should be changed, and someone has to help the women victim of violence or FGM.

The partners talked about the definition and key terms of the FGM in every partner country, the reasons of existence of the FGM, the women rights and other facts from the reality​.

The partner organizations representatives divided the tasks and the responsibilities among them. The project team will work on concrete development objectives like:

  • Capacities in work with FGM;

  • Work with cultural activities in reaching larger audience and local communities;

  • Work with ICT and social medias;

  • Development of modular trainings and materials;

  • Sharing skills and knowledge on practical work on support of woman right’s;

  • Development of guide, videos, data base of trainers, training modules and web page;

  • Create a strong center for work with FGM in Arabic countries;

  • Training and educating youth leaders/workers that will be skilled to carry out work with FGM;

  • Improving youth support systems which will promote youth participation, especially in international context and in work with FGM

At the end of the meeting, partners made a video, representing themselves and their organizations, as well as their role in the project. The video will be published online soon.

On the second day, the group visited the Tunisian Institute of Strategic Studies in Carthage, Tunisia. They’ve met with members of the institute, led by the general director Dr. Neji Jalloul. Partners represented shortly themselves and their organizations, as well as the whole project and the main purpose of it. The meeting dealt with joint ventures and the exchange of studies and experiences. The team asked about some statistics about the violence against women in Tunisia, but Dr. Jalloul said that it’s difficult to calculate the exact number and percentage because the women are afraid to report that they have been victims of violence and because of this fact cannot be made accurate statistics.

After the meeting in the Institute, the group has visited the beautiful Sidi Bou Said, tried some tradition food and met the local culture.

On the next day, the group went to the capital – Tunis and visited the Assembly of the Representatives of the People. They’ve met with Mr. Oussama Sghaier, vice-president of the council in charge of relations with the citizen and with civil society, who made a presentation for them on the chamber of representatives of the town, its functions and its system of work at the level of commissions and public sessions, highlighting the opening of the parliamentary institution to the components of civil society and the interaction with their opinions and proposals on various issues and bills that the council has before it. The group asked some questions about the rights of women in Tunisia and the opportunities they can have for their own development.

Before the meeting with Mr. Oussama Sghaier, the group had the opportunity to examine the parliament building in more detail. It has an amazing architecture!

The group also visited the office of the Tunisian partner organization where they made a short debriefing about the past days, the places they’ve visited, the people which they’ve met, the experience which they’ve gained and their impressions for the project and the country, also the knowledge gained about the topic of the project and their feelings and personal opinion about the affected issue.

The next stage of the project will be a Workshop in Struga, Macedonia in the period 8-14 March 2019 where the participants will talk more about the topic of the project, make some researches and differentiate the problem with the topic of the project in the different partners countries.

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