The discussion focused on the framework of strengthening the role of young women and men in the dissemination of community awareness.
GENDER STEREOTYPES IN PALESTINIAN SOCIETY
The Palestinian Association for Empowerment and Local Development- REFORM, organized a cultural session to present and discuss the documentary film entitled “Speed Sisters.” The discussion aims to analyze community practices and behaviors that contribute to the framing of stereotypes about women along with the devoted exclusionary practices that limit their ability to make their own personal and professional choices. It also discusses how parents confront and transform these challenges into positive factors that contribute to changing the stereotypical image of women. As a result, women will improve the reality of their participation in society.
TACKLING THE OBSTACLES OF GENDER STEREOTYPES
Rawan Sharqawi, the Project Coordinator at REFORM, highlighted the importance of this project and how these sessions simulate different personal experiences and present societal challenges. In addition, the implementation of development processes in marginalized and less privileged areas lies in the importance of analyzing obstacles and societal challenges faced by marginalized groups, especially young men and women. Thus, there must be an analysis of mechanisms to overcome these challenges despite the limited possibilities available to them.
The session began with the screening of the Palestinian documentary entitled “Speed Sisters”, which revolves around four girls who decided to practice car racing and shows their personal experiences after choosing this hobby. The film also portrayed the obstacles that the girls faced and how they contributed to the limitation of their abilities to carry out their personal and professional choices. Also, it conveyed how these girls and their parents were motivated to challenge these obstacle and exclusionary practices in society.
ENHANCING COMMUNITY AWARENESS ON GENDER ISSUES
On the other hand, the participants discussed the importance of enhancing community awareness towards different gender issues through promoting genuine participation of young men and women in society. They stressed the prominence of family upbringing in refining the personality of an individual and pushing him/her in the direction of determining his/her different choices as the basic building block to develop the society. Any defect in this upbringing reaps the fruits of the children later and reflects on their role in society.
At the end of the session, the participants came up with a set of recommendations, which included the need to raise awareness in the family about the significance of enhancing the role of women in society. They also stressed the need to activate the role of the media to convey the issues, experiences, and success stories of women through the production of documentaries more sensitive to gender issues.
ABOUT THE PROJECT
This session was carried out within “Fostering Social inclusion and gender equality within Palestinian society through tackling gender stereotypes” project. It aims to counter discriminatory practices and attitudes that contribute to the promotion of gender inequality, provide safe spaces for youth, including women and refugees, encourage discussions regarding gender-based societal issues, and improve the exchange of experiences among the various components of the Palestinian society to enhance social cohesion.