Tuesday, April 16, 2024

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MoJo for Governance Story Summit: Advocating Women’s Rights through Mobile Storytelling

The Centre for Media and Information Literacy (CMIL) orchestrated a groundbreaking event, the MoJo for Governance Story Summit, in Galle, merging technology, governance, and advocacy to address pressing issues surrounding women’s rights. This summit, which brought together government bodies, NGOs, advocates, and women’s rights activists, stood out for its innovative focus on leveraging Mobile Journalism (MoJo) to amplify women’s voices and advocate for change on a global scale.

Timed strategically to coincide with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, the summit provided a dynamic platform for collaborative action and meaningful dialogue.

At the core of the summit was the theme of advocating for Women’s Rights through Mobile Storytelling, exploring how mobile storytelling can shape narratives, challenge societal norms, and advance gender equality. Engaging sessions facilitated discussions on various facets of women’s rights.

MoJo stories presented during the summit covered a wide array of issues, ranging from Gender-Based Violence to educational rights, nutritious diet concerns, challenges faced by estate workers, minimal female representation in politics, and issues encountered by transgender non-binary females. This diverse range underscored the potency of mobile storytelling in shedding light on critical women’s issues.

Government bodies actively participated in discussions, emphasizing the need for collaboration between the public and private sectors to drive meaningful change. Divisional Secretary Gonapinuwala M. M. M. Shafraas commended MoJo’s accessibility and its effectiveness in communicating complex topics to society.

Renuka Perera from the National Integration Office highlighted the necessity for sex education, citing instances where young girls faced challenges due to lack of knowledge.

Addressing local concerns, officials emphasized the need for safe resting areas for students and women in the Matara District. Participants who created MoJo stories addressing these concerns were recognized, showcasing the tangible impact of mobile storytelling.

Media professionals stressed the importance of empowering young girls in MoJo storytelling and urged NGOs and Government Bodies to provide platforms for their voices. Women’s rights activists shared personal narratives, emphasizing the urgency of addressing systemic challenges. Habaraduwa Development Foundation Chairman Dr. Wimal Dissanayaka applauded participants for shedding light on women’s rights violations through mobile storytelling, recognizing its resonance across digital platforms.

The summit concluded with a resounding call to action, encouraging participants and guests to sustain the momentum. The commitment to utilizing MoJo for governance and advocacy purposes led to the establishment of a collaborative framework, fostering ongoing dialogue and partnerships between Government bodies, NGOs, and activists.

This impactful program was supported by the U.S. Embassy in Colombo under its small and mighty grants program, managed by Sri Lanka Unites.

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