By Anna Borodova
In celebration of International Women’s Week, Berlin-based PANGEA II will be throwing its first ever event in support for the Hope Center. The evening will feature No Shade, a Berlin-based community that brings a safe space for female, trans and non-binary DJ’s. Berlin exemplifies a city that is lucky enough to have these kinds of safe spaces, even taking them for granted. However, Uganda still struggles to open these kinds of centers: as LGBT activities have been banned and criminalized since 2014. How do we fight this? The best way to speak up about the discrimination that women and the LGBT community face daily is through the expression of art and music.
The proceeds from the evening will support HCU in the hopes of creating an environment where young women can learn about the art of making music and realizing their personal dreams. In Uganda, it is estimated that half of women have experienced some sort of physical violence in the country. On top of the Anti-Homosexualty Act, there is the Anti-Pornography Act that includes a “mini-skirt ban” that has led to police stripping women on the street, causing women to be held accountable if they are raped, rather than their attacker. The mini-skirt clause was challenged by the award-winning short film Kyenvu, which is written, directed, and starring Ugandan actress Kemiyondo Coutinho, and will be shown at our fundraiser event.
This inequality has created strong feminist initiatives in the Ugandan electronic scene to fight back and throw specific parties that feature all-women and non-binary DJ lineups and security teams, such as the “Pussy Party”. Key figures in Kampala’s nightlife make these safe spaces possible, from DJ Rachael, to Kampire, to Hibotep and the Nyege Nyege collective. While this is a positive step forward, safe nightlife in such a male-dominated scene will take time and throwing evenings like these can be dangerous. However, women are strong.
Let’s take this week to remember how strong and powerful women are, erase all borders and support each other as much as we can!
Meet us at Sameheads Bar in Neukolln on Wednesday, more info here!