Dear Friends, Colleagues and Activists,
Thank you for picking up the latest issue of Voice Male magazine. We are happy to share this special issue with you as it marks a collaboration between Voice Male and MenEngage Alliance. Voice Male has a unique history in the field of working with men and masculinities for gender justice, which it has been chronicling for three decades. In Voice Male’s pages you will find stories of men standing with women to end gender-based violence and to transform societal ideas about manhood towards forms that are based on equality and feminist principles.
The MenEngage Alliance is a network of more than 700 civil society organizations, research institutes and activists mobilizing and engaging men and boys to advance the rights of women and girls, and gender justice for everyone. We believe that transforming masculinities is crucial. We focus on the roles and responsibilities of men and boys, including their privileges, as well as the ways in which they themselves are harmed by existing expressions of conventional manhood. We take into account how gender identity, race, class, sexual diversity and country-level realities interact with and create systems of oppression. We use a feminist-informed analysis to address power and patriarchy, and build on the achievements of—and work in partnership with—women’s rights activists and other social justice movements.
In this edition of the magazine you will read stories of MenEngage Alliance members and partner organizations from around the world. From inspiring stories of men transforming their ideas about gender equality in Uganda, where they’ve gone from exemplifying patriarchy to becoming “Role Model Men,” using rap music to teach young men about healthy masculinity in Kosovo, to using smart phone technology to promote sexual and reproductive health and rights in India, the rich collection of stories in this special issue are hopeful signs of a new direction with boys and men, for gender equality and justice. By sharing these stories from around the world, we hope not only to engage men and boys, but also to inspire leaders in civil society, researchers, and UN agencies to take action to transform masculinities. Join us!
To a gender just world,
Joni van de Sand
MenEngage Alliance Global Secretariat