AWE Project to host Jeff Perera

The Casket - - Page Two - THE CAS­KET com­mu­ni­ties@her­

So­cial change ed­u­ca­tor Jeff Perera will de­liver the keynote speech, En­gag­ing Boys and Men, to kick- off the re­gional fo­rum, Re­spond­ing to Sex­u­al­ized Vi­o­lence, and Ad­vanc­ing Preven­tion: A Re­gional Fo­rum for Change Mak­ers, which is sched­uled for Oct. 11 in Antigo­nish.

The fo­rum, which is open to the pub­lic, is part of the AWE Project (Ad­vanc­ing Women’s Equal­ity in Ru­ral Nova Sco­tia: Part­ner­ing to Trans­form the Con­text and End Sex­u­al­ized Vi­o­lence), which is funded by Sta­tus of Women Canada, and spon­sored by the Antigo­nish Women’s Re­source Cen­tre and Sex­ual As­sault Ser­vices As­so­ci­a­tion.

In speak­ing tours across

North Amer­ica, Perera has been chal­leng­ing ideas about mas­culin­ity and in­spir­ing peo­ple to con­sider health­ier iden­ti­ties. He has pre­sented two TEDX talks; Words Speak Louder than Ac­tions and The Lad­der of Man­hood.

“Across AWE’S part­ner com­mu­ni­ties, en­gag­ing boys and men to ad­dress sex­ual vi­o­lence has been iden­ti­fied as a crit­i­cal area that needs our at­ten­tion. Erad­i­cat­ing gen­der-based vi­o­lence de­mands their in­volve­ment,” project co- or­di­na­tor An­nie Chau said.

“We hope that men in our com­mu­ni­ties will be in­spired and mo­ti­vated to be change mak­ers, along with us.”

Chau noted Perera’s work, which can also be viewed at Higherun­learn­, ex­plores “how so­ci­ety’s unattain­able and harm­ful con­cepts of mas­culin­ity im­pact peo­ple of all gen­ders.”

“We are ask­ing Jeff to il­lu­mi­nate ways that boys and men can be en­gaged in sys­temic and cul­tural change within our school sys­tems, uni­ver­si­ties and Indige­nous com­mu­ni­ties,” she said.

Chau is steer­ing the three­year AWE Project, which en­tails three re­gional fo­rums (one in each year). At th­ese events, the three project part­ners — the

Strait Re­gional Cen­tre for Ed­u­ca­tion, Paqtnkek Mi’kmaw Na­tion, and St. F.X. — will dis­cuss the re­sults of the project’s year one needs as­sess­ment work.

Or­ga­niz­ers said the year two fo­cus on ac­tion plan­ning will be con­sid­ered as par­tic­i­pants col­lab­o­rate and learn.

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