So much activism is happening around the world from Black Lives Matter to Saba Saba, and the COVID-19 pandemic has magnified the inequalities that already existed. Feminist activists are at the forefront finding solutions, taking care of community and doing the best they can under such
tough circumstances. The big question is who is taking care of the feminists? This conversation provided a space for feminist activists to converge and engage on community care for feminists and how best to achieve tangible support from within the movement.
Where are you with your feminism?
This session was a rejuvenating session that provided relatable content and allowed feminists to offload and vent. Some of the responses included:
What frustrates you the most in feminist activism?
Many times, we talk about the successes we achieve in activism; nobody ever gives feminists a platform to talk about the things that frustrate them as they champion for equal rights. This was such platform and it provided the feminists in attendance with an opportunity to talk about their lived realities as organizers. Some of the frustrations mentioned in feminist activism included:
Solutions for us by us.
This session acknowledged the frustrations raised and led to the community discussing and generating solutions for achieving feminist solidarity.
What does self-care mean to feminist activists? How do they practice it? This session recognized that much of our self-care content is from the west and it is dangerous to replicate practices that do not align with our own experiences as feminists on the continent. It is important to recognize that most of us are not well, because our material conditions are not good. If our material conditions change, our mental health conditions will also radically change. There is a further need to unpack what community care means for activists and collectively develop tangible solutions for collective care.
Practicing Self and Community Care.
• Standing in the gap and holding space for other feminists.
Initiative for Equality and Non Discrimination (INEND) is a local nonprofit organization that researches strategies for equality and acceptance in the coast region of Kenya and shares experiences with other stakeholders in an effort to contribute towards tolerance, non-discrimination and acceptance of gender and sexual minorities.