New fund challenges stereotypes about women in the media

Written by Yazeed Kamaldien

Challenging stereotypes about women in the media tops the agenda of a new foundation launched in Cape Town yesterday, marking national Women’s Day.

The iTouch Foundation, launched at Artscape Theatre in the city, was started to “prioritise girls and women in the media”.

Firdoze Bulbulia, one of its trustees, said they would fund groups or individuals working to “find alternative narratives” when communicating about women.

“We are looking for positive role models, as we deal with body image and narratives that speak correctly to and about girls and women,” said Bulbulia.

“We will also foster support for media training of female journalists, and increase the number of media professionals who have a gender-sensitive bias and understanding.”

She added: “It is important for women and girls to understand how the media functions. Media literacy is an important.”

Bulbulia said the foundation wants to also work with male media professionals as “champions” for their cause.

Bulbulia said TV actress Hlubi Mboya is the foundation’s ambassador.

The fund’s first recipients would be announced at its launch tomorrow (SUNDAY), with the debut named in honour of former parliamentarian Feroza Adam who died in a car accident in Cape Town.

Adam, who was from Johannesburg, was among the first MPs elected to the country’s democratic parliament months before she died on Women’s Day in 1994

That same year, the Institute for Gender Studies initiated the Feroza Adam Memorial lecture that has run annually since then.

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About Yazeed Kamaldien

Self-employed journalist and photographer from South Africa.

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