5 Young Feminist Groups to Support in the Arab World
Young feminist organisations are reinvigorating the feminist movement in the Arab world.
Despite increased crackdowns from governments, lack of adequate funding and threats to their safety, young feminist activists are using innovative strategies to bring gender equality to their communities.
Working on a diverse array of issues - from sexual violence to LGBTQ* rights - young feminists are stepping up to defend the groups that are most vulnerable to oppression and abuse in the Arab world.
Here are the 5 amazing groups of young activists to start supporting today:
1. Fe-Male - Lebanon
Founded in 2012, Fe-Male is a civil feminist collective working to create a world free of patriarchal oppression for women and girls. They aim to teach as many young girls as possible about their rights in order to empower them to become the feminist leaders of the future. As part of this objective, Fe-Male uses campaigns and advocacy to fight against sexist and stereotypical representations of women and girls in the media. Their viral online campaigns have successfully lead to the cancellation of three major advertisements in the past three years.
2. L’Union Féministe Libre (UFL) - Morocco
The young feminists of UFL use legal based campaigning and lobbying to defend victims of sexual violence in court. They also work toward the creation of laws that protect women from violence and discrimination committed on the basis of gender and sexuality. The group ran a campaign entitled “How Many Women Must Die To Change The Laws?” in response to the rape and death of an 18-year-old-woman in 2016. The campaign caught national attention and lead to the successful conviction of those responsible.
3. The Bussy Project - Egypt
The Bussy Project uses performing arts as a medium to tell stories of violence, harassment and discrimination in Egypt. They hold storytelling workshops and performances all over the country with the hope that being open and honest about the experiences of Egyptian youth will lead to opportunities for dialogue across social, gender and sexual divides.
4. Asurif - Algeria
Asurif is a rights based organisation that works with young people to teach them about the everyday discrimination faced by women in Algeria. Their aim is to highlight how Algerian law undermines the opportunities available for women - and specifically rural women - who are often unable to make decisions about their own lives. The group has successfully organised a seasonal market for rural women to sell their organic produce directly to tourists and visitors.
5. Chouf - Tunisia
Chouf uses audiovisual work to advocate for the rights of women and sexual minorities in Tunisia. The organisation aims to dismantle the negative stereotypes surrounding the LGBTQ* community and the idea that their sexual preferences are criminal. Chouf hosts the international feminist art festival “Chouf-Touhonna” every year in Tunis, giving women from all over the world a safe space to be themselves.