In Kyrgyzstan nearly half of all women are subject to violence with most instances going unpunished.
Public Union Bishkek Feminist Initiatives, decided to make a stand. Inspired by the viral 2016 hashtag campaign #янебоюсьсказать (I’m not afraid to say), in which women shared their experiences of gender violence, and aided with a minigrant from the Prague Civil Society Centre, the organisation created the Fair Access to Justice campaign.
The campaign, launched earlier this year, sought to challenge the apathetic attitude of the authorities to the issue. It reminds people that the state is responsible for implementing laws and international obligations to protect women from discrimination and violence, and is therefore accountable when these are not enforced.
To highlight the extent of the hurdles faced by women seeking justice, the Bishkek Feminist Initiatives created ten online chapters featuring evocative artwork, focusing on ten separate issues. The titles of the chapters themselves are revealing: Inability to File an Application, Humiliating Interrogations and Prison or Suicide.
The campaign was accompanied by informative animations, crafted to tell the story in a visual, simple and shareable way. Striking design, an accessible format and intelligent use of online platforms and the media (predominantly kloop.kg) combined to provide a much-needed fresh look at this longstanding problem in Kyrgyzstan.
With the animations receiving over 20 thousand views and women making up 80 percent of the audience, the campaign demonstrated just how important slick and engaging content is to getting a difficult message heard. The group is now working on translating this support and awareness into new campaign initiatives to pressure for reform.