Keep up to date with all that's happening in our Gendered Realities...


Take part in our research on Gendered Realities in SCI activities

Help us find out how safe and inclusive SCI activities are when it comes to gender and sexuality.

  • Does gender or sexuality affect people’s experiences at SCI activities?
  • Are there situations or procedures that make people feel discriminated based on their gender?
  • Do people feel confident in recognising and addressing gender-based discrimination during SCI activities?

Give 15 minutes of your time to share your SCI experience in our assessment tool.

Your contribution will help us gather data and testimonies about the experiences of individuals participating in SCI activities. We will use the outcomes of this research to identify areas for future attention and to take practical measures to keep improving the quality of SCI activities.

Who can take part? Volunteers (participants or coordinators) to SCI workcamps or international trainings/seminars from the past five years.

When? From now until September 2019 



Campaigning Training: call for participants OPEN!

SCI volunteers and activists interested in campaigning and/or gender can now send their application to participate in the international training that will take place in Rome, on 19th-24th November 2019. 

The training will be an opportunity to learn how to design and run successful campaigns thanks to the help of two experts in the field: Valerie Weidinger and Thomas Schallhart. 

Read the call for more information and don't forget to apply via the online form by 18th August 2019!



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Living Library Geneva: “Chapters of self-acceptance”

On 05.07, on the occasion of the Geneva Pride Week, SCI Switzerland organized a Living Library: a library where books are people! During the event, five “living books” shared their stories of self-acceptance and coming out with other people.

More than thirty participants interacted with the “living books,” listening to their stories, asking questions, and expressing their own feelings and ideas. The aim of the event was to allow people, especially the youth, to open up about what they feel and who they are, to reflect on their identities through live exchanges with real humans, instead of finding answers in books or on the Internet, as it most usually happens.

The event was a success, as this testimony from Tanya, 26 year old, shows:

For me, the Living Library was a first-time experience. Most of my queer friends in Geneva had recounted their experiences in casual conversations over drinks and dinners, but this was the first time I actually got to listen to both people I know and didn’t know and their stories. Just being a part of this open and accepting atmosphere made me realize that whether you choose to put a label for yourself or not, there will always be people who will understand and support you and that’s why I love this community.”

Find here a video on the event!



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29.06- a group of participants took to the streets of Brussels, inviting passers-by to join the conversation on gender-based violence. The street action shared facts and statistics, the hashtag #FreetheGender, as well as articles and blank pieces of paper with discussion points, meant to engage the public in discussion.

See the event on Facebook.



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Ligura Pride goes (Service Civil) international!

This June, a group of 9 international volunteers traveled to Genova, Italy, to work with the coordinating committee of Liguria Pride 2019 (the annual Pride event of the region). The volunteers were involved in the running and organisation of 67 activities over the 8 days of the Pride Village, which focused on gender and LGBTQIA+ education and community engagement.

The events included debates, workshops, activities with children, presentations, a tour of LGBTQIA+ arts in Liguria and, of course, the Pride parade! The volunteers met and exchanged with many local groups, such as the Pangender Association, Liguria Rainbow and Non Una di Meno, with whom they could share and exchange approaches and experiences.

Read more about it here, or hear from the volunteers and coordinators in this video!

“I feel more powerful and courageous to fight in a world that’s still very far from accepting and opening. Thank you for all the things you taught me, you said to me, thank you for making me stronger and more proud.” Gio, 17, workshop participant.



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Gender Realities & Inclusion Workcamp in Tirana

PVN Albania organised a workcamp to raise awareness of gendered realities and practices in Albania, especially among marginalised groups in rural areas. Volunteers organised activities focused on the topic of gender, gender discrimination and violence, personal perspectives and stories, with:

*Roma youth
*Mothers from the Roma community
*Young people in Vaqarri rural school
*Young people in Lalm rural schools

Hear about the impact of the project from a young participant- 

“I am from a village not far from the city, however I feel it is too far because there are not so many free time opportunities for my friends and I. This camp made me feel important; made me happy. I learned so many things about domestic violence and gender roles we do have in our families. I have realised that many times I have been object of violence somehow, my mother as well. Now I think everyday, what and how I should do. PVN is my referring point to be consulted and ask for advice. It Looks such strange that from a camp you came to have fun with some volunteers from other countries, and it ended up that understanding my situation in my family and my society.” S.G, pupil in Ndroq area.



Love is love, street action in Vienna

What would you do, if you wanted to challenge the concept of heteronormativity in a creative matter? With this street action in Vienna, SCI activists stimulated people passing by to question their usual thinking structures on gender & love.




Workshops in Zagreb & Budapest

25.05- two groups met in Zagreb & Budapest to break down gender norms, hear diverse voices and have important discussions around topics such as:

*(Deconstruction of) gender roles
*Social vs. labour market roles of women
*Current political trends
*Gender-based violence

 Read more about the events in Zagreb & Budapest.


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Gendered Realites' first local action takes place in Bulgaria

On 20.04, CVS Bulgaria held a day activity which brought together women from two cities- Gabrovo and Veliko Tarnovo. The training informed the participants on how to organise local events in the format of 'SHE in..'- a successful social action strategy using multipliers for female empowerment.

SHE in Veliko Tarnovo is already in the planning stage, with a venue chosen.

SHE in Gabrovo has its date set for 3rd of July and has the support of an award-winning photographer!

See their updates on Facebook, Facebook and Instagram.



Calling all Local Actions!

We are now OPEN to receiving applications for local actions on the topic of gender, in eligible Council of Europe countries and Kosovo.

With your Local Action you should work on:

- reaching out to (young) people and raising awareness of gender-related issues;
- and/ or supporting the assessment of gendered realities in volunteering activities.

The format is flexible, and should be adapted to local needs and capacities. All types of activity are valuable!

We have the possibility to offer funding for local actions of 1 day (or less), OR 5-10 days.

Find the application form here and the full details of the call here.



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Gendered Realities kicks off!

The first activity of Gendered Realities has now concluded in Tirana, Albania. A group of 25 participants came together from across Europe to discuss the topic of gender within SCI and beyond, pool knowledge and resources, and contribute to the development of new tools for more inclusive future activities!

Read the full activity report here, and find out more about the session's content and outputs.




"Free to be You and Me" Toolkit on Gender

This toolkit for youth workers, volunteer coordinators and trainers was developed and published under the Gendered Realities project and with the support of the UNESCO Participation Programme 2018-2019. It is the work of the Gender Blenders Working group and the Association of SCI, with content contributions from a series of international trainings organised by SCI Germany, SCI Austria and SCI-IS between 2015 and 2019.

The toolkit provides comprehensive information on gender and sexuality, along with practical guidelines and easy-to-use tools, with the aim of helping leaders to address the topic of gender and sexuality in their activities. It is hoped that this will be a tool which helps to make activities more safe and inclusive for all, regardless of gender identity or sexuality.

Read the full version here!

We have also produced shortened versions in English, Albanian, Bulgarian and Serbian.

If you or your branch would like to have a physical copy, please contact Federica at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



We are very happy to present our new IEC! 

We have four continuing members and four new members. Malgorzata (Gośka) Tur was re-elected as President, Rita Warleigh continues as Vice-President, and Alexandra Vasileiou was elected as Treasurer.  So-called ‘ordinary members’ who are actually all quite extraordinary, are Jackie Purves and Hemamali Perera both continuing their mandates, and newly elected Clara Giberga, Lisa Wevelsiep, and Bhupender Yadav. We look forward to a larger team with responsibilities being shared among more people.

The first IEC meeting in January in Antwerp was very productive.  Unfortunately Bhupender was unable to get a visa in time so he joined us by Skype as much as possible. 

Lisa introduced us to the process of Dragon Dreaming in which we dug deep into our fears and expectations.  Clara led a creative process for getting to know each other using an Instagram analogy. 

Our agenda was packed as usual but time was allocated for getting to know the staff and volunteers in the IS through a modified Human Library. We were pleased to have the chance to get to know Ettore and establish a good working relationship.

Tasks were reviewed and allocated with many new tasks identified and a few crossed off the list as completed.  The team spirit was positive, working practices were consolidated, plans put in place, meals shared, new members integrated and confidence boosted. We learned new cultural expressions like ‘bamboozled’ from Jackie, and ‘washing their faces’ from Clara.

Our personal aims for the year ahead were expressed as well as our aims for IEC.  Our legal responsibility is to manage the IS and to carry out the wishes of the movement as expressed through the ICM.  But of course we do much more than that.  And in case you have any special wishes or topics you think we should take care of, please let us know. 


Written by Rita Warleigh


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Activity 1: International Study Session on Gender

The first activity of Gendered Realities happened from 12-17th February 2019 in Tirana, Albania. Read the full activity report here!


Activity 2: Volunteer Follow-up Actions

Local actions are happening throughout the period from April to September 2019. To follow the actions as they happen, you can keep track of our project updates page.


Activity 3: Campaigning Training 

The training will take place in Rome on 19th-24th November 2019. The application process is now open to all volunteers and activists interested in campaigning and/or gender. Read the call and send your application at this link by 18th August!


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