Madinabonu Salaidinova

2023 IVLP Impact Award Project: Academy of Gender NormsKyrgyzstan

Madinabonu Salaidinova is a feminist activist from Osh, Kyrgyz Republic. She has been a staff member of the feminist youth-led organization "Novi Ritm" since 2018 and is currently the Chairperson of the Board of that organization. Madinabonu has been a coordinator of an informal network of human rights NGOs which operates in the southern part of the country since October 2022. She is a member of the informal network Young Voices of Central Asia which was founded in November 2022. In 2021 and 2022,  Madinabonu was involved in developing two research projects related to different topics: to highlight the impact of armed border conflicts to girls and women; and to analyze the level of security of human rights defenders in Kyrgyzstan.

IVLP Impact Award Project: Academy of Gender Norms

The Academy of Gender Norms was a social project that developed civic engagement, gender sensitivity and legal literacy among young people in southern Kyrgyzstan. Using the methodology developed in the project, 26 young people aged 16-35 from the regions of Osh, Batken and Jalal-Abad were selected from among the 234 applicants to participate in the camp for five days. During this time, they engaged in a variety of activities like holding educational sessions on DEIA, gender norms and stereotypes, civic activism, community mobilization and community-based problem solving, among others. They also worked in two thematic groups on art and media and prepared final presentations of developed materials. The group that focused on media developed an audio podcast about gender inequality in relation to girls in Kyrgyzstan as well as seven social media publications about what gender equality is, what stereotypes exist, and how to fight them. The art group created 33 paintings and an installation. The artwork fostered discussion about topics such as independence, traditions and gender norms that limit girls in education.

Finally, the participants developed two project initiatives to share what they learned with their peers. For example, the participants from the Jalal-Abad area organized a training for 18 of their peers about human rights in the context of gender equality. Meanwhile, participants in the Osh area organized a conference on Human Rights Day involving 50 young people, with a focus on GBV prevention and reporting procedures. The conference also included an exhibition of the artwork created during the camp, which sparked useful discussions in the broader community. Inspired by the activism portion of the camp several participants became involved with local NGOs since attending.

"The coolest 5 days and 4 nights, which helped me to find my community, and to realize once again how important it is to be among your own…where there is motivation and goals for further movement. I am so glad that I came to this camp and had a great time here, I got a lot of useful information" - Camp Participant

IVLP Exchange Experience 

Madinabonu was a participant in the IVLP Project A Global Moment in Time- Reflections on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility, organized by the U.S. Department of State and Meridian International Center.

Madinabonu's exchange experience led to the development of her IVLP Impact Award Project: "After participating in the online sessions and visiting the U.S., I began to think more about the importance of using equity to work with diversity. I realized that I wanted as many young people as possible to be able to start thinking about the need for inclusive approaches."

U.S. Communities Visited

Washington, DC; Boston, MA

Country: Kyrgyzstan 

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