Gender Equality in Poland and Arab Countries, 1-2 March, Gdansk, Poland

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2013-02-27 20:56:42 / News read 2902 reading

Problems in the southern Mediterranean will be presented based on issues of gender equality in Poland, and how the policy of equality affects the quality of democracy. Old Town Hall, seat of The Baltic Sea Cultural Centre ul. Korzenna 33/35, 80-851 Gdańsk, tel. +48 58 301 10 51

The debate will begin with a 10-minute video in which an educated Tunisian woman, Khouloud Nedini, talks about her commitment to tradition. The film will be an opportunity to discuss the situation and needs of Arab women for researchers, activists working in the field, and ordinary people who have had a closer look at the issue of gender equality in the Arab world.


The participants of the panel – ALF network members – will have the opportunity to learn about equality issues in Arab countries. It will be an inspirational experience to take part in discussions on this very sensitive topic.


The person leading the debate:



Alina Wiśniewska | private materials


Leader of the debate: Alina Joanna Wiśniewska has an MA in Philosophy. She has been working for many years as a journalist in the press, radio and television in the Tri-City area. She is an instructor of Therapy Through Theatre, an art therapist, and a communication skills and PR trainer. She is the president of the Gdańsk Foundation of Therapy and Development, which deals with therapy and art and closely cooperates with the organization Campaign for Commercial-Free Childhood, the aim of which is to protect children against an over-consumptive lifestyle.


Panellists: Magdalena Nowaczek-Walczak


Marta Górska | photo ICC

Marta Górska is a Polish philology graduate with an MA in Classics from the University of Warsaw. She is a journalist (including Radio TOK FM), editor-in-chief of a portal dedicated to the Middle East (, cultural animator, and coordinator of social and cultural projects in Tunisia and Lebanon. She cooperates with two non-governmental organizations: the ‘Africa Another Way’ Foundation and the Other Space Foundation.

The subject of the speech

The panellist will present the current situation of women in a post-revolutionary country (Tunisia), using opinions of both male and female activists and politically non-aligned women concerning safety and mindset determined, on one hand, by tradition and, on the other, by modernity. The speech will also include how the position of women has changed under the influence of the revolution and political change. She will also refer to her personal experiences gained during visits to Lebanon (2011-2012). Recommendations will also be presented for those interested in engaging in activities in aid of women in the region.



Małgorzata Tarasiewicz | private materials

Małgorzata Tarasiewicz has been the director of the Network of East-West Women international organization since 2004, and the director of the Network of East-West Women Poland since 2000. She is a member of the board of the European Women’s Lobby EUROSTEP, and an activist in Women for Pomerania, an informal platform connecting women from the Pomeranian Voivodeship. In the 80s, she was an activist in “Freedom and Peace” – an organization standing in opposition to the communist regime. From 1989 to 1991 she was the coordinator of the Women Country Section of the “Solidarity” Independent Self-governing Trade Union, and then from 1991 to 1995 the president of Amnesty International Poland.

The subject of the speech

The speech will give an introduction to gender issues in Poland, along with a brief history of actions undertaken to introduce European and the UN’s standards of equality, with particular emphasis on non-governmental organizations related to the promotion of these standards. Another aspect of the speech will be a description of the current situation of women in Poland, including the labour market, violence against women and reproductive rights. The topic of the impact of the equality policy on the quality of democracy will also be raised. The presentation will include a reference to the impact of the current economic crisis on women.

Alena Padharadzetskaya | private materials

Alena Padharadzetskaya is of Belarusian origin. She has lived in Poland for 7 years. She has two children. She is a lecturer in philosophy and pedagogy by education, and is a specialist in marketing and PR. She is also a Russian language teacher and social activist (promotion of culture and the arts, healthy lifestyle and sport, working with children and teenagers, social integration, education). She lived in Cairo and its environs for several years, where she worked as a teacher in a private school.

The subject of the speech

She intends to share her experiences and observations from her several-year stay in Egypt. Living among ordinary Egyptians in a typical working neighbourhood, she had a unique opportunity to learn about and look at how the ordinary Egyptian family functions. This will be a report from a female foreigner observing relationships in the Arab community.

In her speech she will also include her insights and recommendations on general cooperation with Arab countries: what to focus on and where to start specific actions.



Samer Masri | private materials

Samer Masri is a Syrian activist, spokesman for the Syrian Revolution Support Committee from Poland, and founder of the Free Syria initiative dealing with the organization of aid to Syrians. He holds a PhD in economics, and was a lecturer at the Jagiellonian University from 2000 to 2003. At the end of 2003 he took part in a mission in Iraq as the main economic expert. He has been honoured twice by the Polish president. He is a consultant of the Other Space Foundation.

The subject of the speech

He will present the current situation of Syrian women in the context of war trauma. He will talk about the needs and possibilities of support for women in this part of the world.

Robert Palusiński has worked as a coach in organizations and companies since 1997, and since 1999 as a facilitator using the approach and applying the principles of Deep Democracy. In 2004, in cooperation with several non-governmental organizations, he facilitated and co-organized the first Polish Deep Democracy Open Forum in Krakow on sexual minorities in the city. He works as a facilitator, coach and consultant on  conflict and problem resolution in organizations, families, couples and individuals.

Debate organizer: The Therapy & Development Foundation in Gdańsk is 3 years old. The main recipients of its actions are children and youths as well as teachers, parents who have difficulties with raising children and women experiencing mental crises. They undergo state-of-the-art art therapy, individual psychotherapy, workshops, psychoeducation and theatrical workshops. A dozen or so volunteers work for the GFTR Foundation. The GFTR Foundation stirs local communities into action and stimulates international cooperation. The foundation cooperates with organisations from London (local community development, children’s creativity) as well as with the YMCA in Slovakia (multimedia, youth). It is looking for partners in the Mediterranean region who would be interested in the development of children’s creativity and in citizen journalism.


The film presents an interview by Luda Reno and Martha Mountain, in which Khouloud Nedini talks about her life. It was carried out within the “Women in Action” project, run by the ‘Africa Another Way’ Foundation.


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Tytuł informacji: Gender Equality in Poland and Arab Countries, 1-2 March, Gdansk, Poland
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