Middle East DV Delegates Meet Voice Male

At the International Center of Worcester we work to promote citizen diplomacy by designing and implementing professional and cultural programs for international visitors sponsored by local and foreign governmental and nongovernmental agencies, private companies, universities, and individuals. Earlier this year, the State Department identified Voice Male magazine as a great resource to highlight how the publication addresses the role of traditional media publications in gender equality and violence prevention campaigns. Through the Center’s International Visitor Leadership Program, delegates from Algeria, Chad, Iraq, Jordan, Morocco, and Saudi Arabia came to the U.S. in March to meet with colleagues around the country—including Voice Male editor Rob Okun—to exchange best practices and grow their U.S. contacts. Examining programs and practices that raise awareness in confronting domestic violence and abuse—and strategies to transform attitudes of those who condone or tolerate abuse—following his presentation, the delegates engaged in a lively Q & A with Rob. We want to thank Voice Male for its work surrounding the social transformation of masculinity, and for helping us with our seven international visitors from the Middle East and North Africa.

Kellee Kosiorek
Program Coordinator
International Center of Worcester
Worcester, Mass.


Transforming “Son-in-Law” Day

We live in a society where many men believe they should always be in a higher position than women. “Jamai Sasthi”— Son-in-Law Day—is a festival where husbands receive food and gifts from their mothers-in-law in appreciation for the men’s kindness and good work. Jamai sasthi is a patriarchal concept that feeds a male egocentric characteristic in the society where masculinity is taken as a concept of dominance. Celebrated on May 31 this year, we broke this stereotyping, celebrating instead creating a society without masculine privileges dominating others on the basis of hegemony patriarchal concepts. In place of celebrating sonsin- law, our organization, Kolkata Rista, celebrated the power of gender equality and related ideologies that advance justice for all humanity. On Son-in-Law day we invited the transgender community so we could celebrate the transgender community and the true power of gender equality. It’s time to end patriarchal concepts of masculinity.

Dr. Santosh Kumar Giri
Secretary and Executive Director
Kolkata Rista
West Bengal, India

Editor’s Note: Kolkata Rista provides services and information to gender and sexual minorities, including “transgender/ Hijra people and MSM (men having sex with men)” communities. Estaiblished a decade and a half ago, Kolkata Rista works to improve health conditions for people infected and affected by HIV/AIDS. For more, go to: www.kolkatarista.org


Impact in Nepal

Voice Male is one of the impactful resources for me in my training classes and workshops in transforming masculinity for the journalists and social mobilizers in Nepal. Many thanks for the sharing of the magazine.

Kapil Kafle
Executive Director
Institute of Human Rights
Communication, Kathmandu, Nepal