HomeStandard PeopleArts festival ropes in touts to fight sexual harassment

Arts festival ropes in touts to fight sexual harassment

WOMEN Arts Festival organisers are targeting touts so that they train them on the negative impact of sexual harassment.

BY PROBLEM MASAU

This follows an increase in cases of touts being dragged to court for sexually harassing women, especially those wearing mini-skirts.

Edith-WeUtongi

The festival, which will also see young artistes being mentored in different arts disciplines by Edith WeUtonga Katiji, Blessing Musariri, Eunice Tava and Lloyd Nyikadzino, is being organised by Young Voice Network.

The four-day festival roars into life on November 11.

Festival coordinator Tayiona Sanangurai said the festival seeks to celebrate female artistes, build their capacity and create a peer network of support.

“On November 13, we will be in the streets, campaigning against sexual harassment, which will be led by 20 touts that we have trained,” said Sanangurai..

“Last year, we successfully trained touts at Market Square and they have started a campaign called Street Harassment.”

He said they will also honour women who have succeeded in various arts sectors.

“We will honour women artistes who have made great contribution to the sector. The idea is to raise awareness on the erasure of women in the arts history,” he said.

“Two hundred female artistes will be inscribed on the floor, recognising how they have also contributed to the sector.”

One of the mentors, Edith WeUtonga said she was thrilled to train female artistes.

“I feel like it is my responsibility to help ensure there is a better enlightened generation of upcoming female artistes. We never got the chance to be mentored when we started,” she said.

“The light only gets bigger if we share it and we lose nothing by lighting one another.”

The festival, which is in its third year, is meant to celebrate women who have excelled while mentoring upcoming female artistes.

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