The plight of women is a thorny one all over the world and there is a need to constantly remind men of the importance of women in life.
The predicament of the current and future mothers of our human race has been in focus at Intwasa Arts Festival Ko Bulawayo for the past three years with the festival setting aside a “special” day to display issues on women emancipation.
With this year’s edition of the festivities coming to an end on 25 September, many productions and discussions were done during Intwasa to empower young women.
It’s not a secret that young girls, especially at school, suffer different forms of ill-treatment including sexual abuse.
Intwasa partnered Plan International and the government of Finland to address such issues through production and display of short films that include Date Night and Mlamu Wami
The thematic concerns of the short films were on sexual and domestic abuse, and amplifying the young girl’s voice to speak out on these dreadful subjects.
Raisedon Baya, who is the director of Intwasa, said the two productions made an impact on the festival because young creatives were engaged to tell their own stories.
“A girl child is the most abused being in the world proven by statistics and there is a need to protect and find means to empower them to speak out about abuse.
“We partnered with Plan International and the government of Finland who helped us to amplify the plight of young girls and it gave birth to beautiful short films Date Night and Mlamu Wami,” said Baya.
Intwasa made sure that face-to-face interaction was cultivated during the festival and ladies had a chance to sit around the table and discuss their dilemma on shows such as The Women’s Round Table and Amplifying Girls’ Voices Though Digital Arts.
The famous Women, Wine and Words and the Girl’s Leadership Workshop, were also conducted as a manner of giving women a voice.
“For the past three years, we have set aside a day that is specially dedicated to women. This is where they discuss issues affecting them on a dialogue kind of interaction.
“With these efforts, Intwasa has managed to shape the lives of young women in the arts industry and beyond as they teach each other about their worth,” said Baya.
This year’s festival coincided with the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair and Intwasa became a platform of “exhibiting” the Bulawayo arts and culture.
“We are happy and content with this year’s festival. We were celebrating 17 years of existence and we are still going strong despite being affected by Covid-19.
“The highlight of this year’s edition is that young talent was given a chance to show Bulawayo what they can do on stage and they got “paid” for their effort.
“We are hopeful that Bulawayo will continue hosting such shows (like Intwasa) in a Covid-19 free, healthy and peaceful environment,” said Baya.