Each day, hundreds of thousands of girls and women globally are subjected to cultural, religious and traditional practices that are harmful to them physically, sexually, emotionally and psychologically. These practices range from acid violence, breast flattening, cosmetic mutilation, dowry and bride price, early/forced marriage and marriage by abduction/rape, female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), ‘honour’ crimes, corrective rape, female infanticide, ritual sexual slavery, virginity testing, practices related to initiation or menstruation, some widowhood rituals and accusations of witchcraft levied at older women, extreme bias against daughters in favour of sons, to mention a few. These practices are a product of social norms which aim to uphold cultural ideas about gender roles and social relations and have been embraced by the wider society, including some women and girls.
Harmful traditional practices reduce and limit the capacity of women and girls to participate fully in society and to reach their full potential as humans. The impact ripples throughout society, reinforcing the very gender stereotypes and inequalities that gave rise to the harm in the first place.
The 2020 International Virtual Conference on Harmful Traditional Practices themed: Eradicating Harmful Traditional Practices in the time of COVID-19: A Look at the Benefits is a 2-day virtual event to discuss, address and find community-based solutions, draft policies, and develop strategies to eradicate harmful traditional practices globally.
The conference will host Stakeholders, Government Officials,, International Development Organisation Representatives, Traditional Rulers, Religious Leaders, Social Workers, Gender Specialists, NGOs, Researchers, Teachers, Activists, Cultural Artists, Performers, Therapists, Healers, Students and Individuals who have an interest in addressing or gaining knowledge about the theme and subthemes.
The two days virtual conference will witness presentations, panel discussions, workshops, side-events, performances and other contributions by selected and appointed individuals and organisations from around the world. The presenting organisations will host, moderate and facilitate their sessions during the side events of the program for interested registered participants.
Day 1: Wednesday 2nd of December 2020
Day 2: Thursday 3rd of December 2020
Women Ministers / Commissioners
Top Government Officials
Researchers/ Educators/ Students