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BBB Live Library – Woman in 21st Century – report

This year for the first time, Balkans Beyond Borders included to their 10th short film festival  “ e- motions” a tribute called “ Youth and Labour/ Women and Labour ”, promoting short films made by young directors from the region centered in the challenges women and young people face today. This was made possible under the European Operational Program  for human resources development, education and lifelong learning  and in addition to the screenings, wanting to deal more thoroughly  with the issues and the role of women in modern societies , we organized “ Live Libraries ” under the name Woman in 21st Century  In this event, speakers were viewed as books that unravel their story to the audience , and then discussed with them in order to eliminate quick judgments and develop a more personal relationship.

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The speakers were five wonderfully diverse women with unique life experiences. The director Andreea Valean, talked about art in a post-communist environment and her experience as a young female director as well as the inspiration to her work . Maria Rouze, not only shared her personal challenges trying to settle from Africa to Greece and take care her children and anyone needing her help , but also described the creation and development of her NGO, which tries give a helping hand to those in need .  Gabriela Telekfalvi ,  expressed the importance of understanding disabilities and including people with disabilities in the conversation , by describing her own condition and the health challenges she faces as well as the work she and her team does through KINITRO and Labyrinth of Senses . Loukia Maragkou then , talked about her experience being not only a mother of four but also a “ mother ” to all of her students and the difficulties in balancing work and family . Last but not least , Maria Gkasouka , professor on Gender and Cultural Studies , had a lot to say about being a woman fighting to thrive in the male dominant academic field choosing the controversial at the time science of gender .

Ntiana Manesi , an academic on gender studies representing Diotima , was there to comment after each story . Her comments and judgements gave a well-constructed insight to the audience , which with the help of direct conversation , had the chance to meet furthermore every speaker . The whole atmosphere of this event , surpassed our expectations as we saw a true connection between the “ books ” and the “ readers ” , in an environment built with respect and acceptance towards everyone .