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Open Letter: Egypt Must Take Serious and Genuine Steps to End Gender Discrimination

Gender discrimination has been a long-standing crisis in Egypt for far too long. With the 80th Session of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) taking place this month, we urge the Egyptian government to commit to promoting and protecting the rights of women and girls, and […]

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4 Ways We Can Support Women’s Economic Empowerment in Sub-Saharan Africa

The creative manufacturing and handmade sector is the second largest employer in developing countries. The African continent is renowned for its diverse culture and heritage. Many handmade artisans in rural Africa contribute to the development of their regions by crafting unique products for the local and international markets. These products are not limited […]

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Women & Girls in Nigeria Need New Resources to Address Gender-Based Violence

In my home country of Nigeria, there’s always been an eerie silence surrounding gender-based violence (GBV). GBV can be described as any act of violence that is directed at a person or a group of people based on their gender. It is deeply rooted in patriarchy and gender inequality and can be in […]

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Women-led NGO AWRA Empowers African Children Through Comic Series

Meet Kawkab, a 10-year-old Sudanese shero whose superpowers allow her to defy space and time. Kawkab was created by AWRA founding member Reem Abdellatif and Sudanese Artist Ibrahim of Abbas Comics to empower African children through educational comics. Kawkab is one of many young girls who dares to dream. She uses her unique […]

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An Ode to My African-Arab Vagina: I’m Sorry for Not Embracing You

As an Egyptian woman, I’m writing this as an ode to my body – specifically my vagina. I grew up in an extremely patriarchal society where men are given free passes to act out as sexual predators, scratch themselves in public, and freely stick their penises out to urinate in the streets or […]

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In Nigeria, Religious Abuse Perpetuates Violence Against Women and Girls

It is estimated that one in three women experience either physical or sexual intimate partner violence or non-partner sexual violence in their lifetime, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). It also states that “globally up to 38 percent of murders of women are committed by intimate partners” and in most cases, violence against […]

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Living with PCOS Taught Me That We Need More Women Doctors Who Center Women

The first time I ever heard about PCOS was in 2018 on a group chat that I created for young African women. As I read caveat after caveat of symptoms and how those who shared their stories have resigned to the possibility of never having kids, I shuddered with fear and was internally […]

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Somalia: Government must end medical negligence and prioritize anti-FGM laws

  A loss of life, especially when it is completely avoidable, stings different. Just a few weeks ago, Fartun Ahmed, a 13-year-old bled to death after undergoing female genital mutilation in Somalia. FGM is a violation that 200 million women and girls — according to UNICEF — survived and live with day in day […]

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In Egypt, I was called ‘rebellious’ for resisting sexual abuse as a child

Every morning, I remind myself that my body is mine, and I do not owe anyone anything. I really wanted someone to remind me of this when I was young, vulnerable and innocent. I grew up with a very strong and determined character. I was always the kind of girl who knew what […]

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#ReclaimTheNarrative: In Solidarity With the Women and Girls of Tigray

The Tigray crisis has internally displaced about 2.3 million children, totally cutting them off from humanitarian aid, according to the UN. The conflict in Tigray is now in its ninth month. It has also left about 5 million people in need of food and sustenance. More than 350,000 of those people are living […]

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Gaslighting, Harassment & Misogyny: The Life of a Teenage Girl in Egypt

by Basmala Elbeblawy I was 16-years-old the first time I was sexually harassed. Honestly, at the time, I had no clue what sexual harassment actually looked like. Since Egypt’s 2011 uprising, I started hearing more about sexual harassment in Egyptian media simply because more women started to speak up. Before that, I […]

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End Rape Culture: Legal Frameworks in Africa & MENA Must Empower Women and Support Survivors

Rape is an unlawful sexual act that includes the demonstration of any sexual activity without the consent of a person. Commonly, rape is believed to be carried out by force or threat. However, it must be noted that rape does not necessarily have to include coercion. This was recently highlighted by Dubravka Šimonović, […]