Safecity is growing exponentially and we’re constantly working hard to translate our vision to reality. Because we don’t want you to miss out on our work, we’ve decided to put together a monthly column to tell you about what we’ve been up to. You can sign up for our newsletter here.
Light of Freedom Award
On 8th March- International Women’s Day, our Founder, Elsa Dsilva was honored at the Vital Voices Global Leadership Awards with the “Light of Freedom” award in Washington DC at the Kennedy Centre for the Performing Arts for her work in Safecity of crowdmapping sexual harassment in public spaces and facilitating customised and sustainable solutions.
On 16th March, Elsa D’Silva conducted a lecture as part of the new course- Safety in the Making at KTH The Royal Institute of Technology Stockholm. The lecture explained from a practical perspective the strategies in dealing with sexual violence using crowdsourced data with examples from our own work.
Mainstreaming SDG5 in the New Urban Agenda through Data and Technology
On 21st March, Safecity hosted a parallel event at the NGO CSW61 Forum in New York at the Church Center for the United Nations. This event was held in partnership with Stop Street Harassment and Polycom Development Project.
Our Founder, Elsa, broke the ice by asking all the participants if they had seen anyone being harassed, experienced it themselves followed by a discussion on where this happened, at what age, if transportation is safe, if people were aware of legislation in their country and if they reported to any official authority like the police. Holly and Elsa shared experiences about use of crowdsourced data to drive decision making to improve safety at the individual and community level. They also shared practical experiences on how “story telling” and datasets can be used to advocate for change with the police, municipal authorities, faith leaders, transportation authorities, elected representatives and even individuals. Holly shared her experience of getting Washington DC transit to recognise sexual harassment as an issue and invest in Public Service Advertisements. Community engagement also led to corporates pulling down sexist messaging on advertisement billboards.
Ravi Karkara, Sr. Strategic Partnership Adviser to Assistant Secretary-Gen/Deputy ED UN Women gave a short address where he discussed the need to pull down patriarchal systems and cultures. He spoke about the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and the LEAP framework to involve youth and individuals to be agents of change.
Safecity was one of the finalists at the Inaugural Sandvik India Diversity Awards in the Category of NGO from a total of 169 applicants and post two rounds of jury selection. A rigorous two days of mentoring and preparation was conducted for each of the finalists prior to the awards night.
Building a Movement
Our Twitter handle @pinthecreep recently crossed 1,50,000 followers! It is curated on a weekly basis by different people and organisations. The reason to rotate the curator is to bring out the different opinions on the issue of sexual violence and engage people to be activists for this cause. An open space to talk about sexual violence, every week we have a new person take over our handle and share their perspectives and experiences. @pinthecreep has facilitated discussions on the various Sustainable Development Goals, topics that were considered taboo like menstruation, sex, pre and post -natal depression, mental health and much more. Our aim is to make these issues that revolve around gender and sexual violence non taboo through conversations and awareness.
We conduct TweetChats every Friday night at 9 pm IST. Do join is and add value to these conversations. If you wish to curate our handle or conduct a TweetChat do write in to firstname.lastname@example.org
Safecity Emerging Leaders
Safecity is celebrating the journey of people who have emerged as leaders as our campaigns progressed in their communities through our blog series “Safecity Emerging Leaders”. Read the inspiring stories of these individuals who are passionate about making their neighbourhoods safer with Safecity and have taken action in their own special ways.
Read this month’s Emerging Leader Shripriya’s story on our blog here.
When we asked Shripriya about her experience doing an internship with Safecity, this is what she had to say –
“The most challenging and equally eye opening aspect of my internship was the interactions with other persons. The overall experience of interning with Safecity have been wonderful. I have gained immensely in terms of communication skills and the guidance of the team has helped me gain new perspectives on several key issues. I have strongly been interested in addressing sexual harassment in public spaces and Safecity provided me an apt platform to do so.”
We have several opportunities for you to volunteer and take action. Do check our website.
Know Our Team
Know Our Team is a new blog series that attempts to bring to you the stories of our team, share our experiences, why we do what we do and special moments that have left an indelible mark in each of our lives.
Read this month’s blog by our Head of Operations in Pune, Tania Echaporia, who writes about her experience with Safecity and her journey with us so far here.
“Every single day in the newspaper, in Pune, there are cases of molestation and sexual abuse. It’s like a pandemic. I joined Safecity in 2016, to help create awareness and stop sexual harassment. I look forward to making a difference in the lives of women and children and making public spaces safer and equally accessible to all.”
We are looking for a Program and Outreach Officer for Ahmedabad and Bangalore. Do send your CV to email@example.com
Through our tweetchats we are trying to facilitate important conversations around various issues related to gender in general and women’s issues in particular.
Our curators this month conducted four TweetChats around women, celebrating their achievement and bringing to light the many issues and injustices they still face while keeping in mind Women’s Day.
Check out the storified tweetchats here- Leveraging Social Media To Make Women’s Voices Matter #IWD2017 and Women in the Workplace.
- March 31st- April 2nd #flight2DEN Flight to Denver Solutions Summit with Project X-ITE
- 2nd-8th April Anti Sexual Harassment week
- Safecity in Trinidad and Tobago- ElsaMarie D’Silva will be in Trinidad & Tobago to launch a local chapter of Safecity with our partner Nicole Joseph, founder of Ms BraFit. We will be working on solutions regarding sexual violence and reproductive rights. There will be a series of panel discussions on violence and how the Safecity methodology can be adapted to the local context. We will also be co-hosting the Vital Voices Global Mentoring Walk, Anti Street Harassment activities and a speed mentoring session. Check our website for more details.
- April 4th, 2017 – Panel Discussions
Session 1: Women on the Map – a global discourse on women, body perception and the challenges women face (Elsa, Suzanne and Nicole)Session 2: Violence in the Wider Communities – citizen safety and our value systems (Elsa, Suzanne and Dianne)Session 3: Citizenry, Technology and Numbers – Uploading violence for social impact (Elsa, Suzanne and Renee)Unveiling of the Safecity App – Invitation for collaborative ventures and Demo
- April 5th, 2017 – School Visits and Global Mentoring Walk, Picnic and Anti Street Harassment Week Advocacy
- April 6th, 2017 – Speed Mentoring Event