By Arret Jatta
Former Paradise Foundation now PF Initiative launched a collection of songs dedicated to advocating against Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV), funded by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on the 30th of November 2023 at the Paradise Suite Hotel.
Mariama Jobe performed her song called “Bajen”, a song dedicated to the elderly women in society leading the fight against SGBV in many local communities.
Aisha Baldeh the executive director of the PF initiative told delegates present that “with the help of UNDP we were able to scale up the “Ask Bajen” initiative. We started with four Bajens and a talk show but afterwards, we realized that the Bajens do more than a talk show so we wrote a proposal to UNDP and they agreed to scale up the Bajens from four to forty”.
Sambou Suso a veteran musician also performed her song “1313” which is the helpline number for anyone facing gender-based violence in her attempt to increase awareness and popularize the helpline “1313”.
Ms Baldeh says most of the calls they received from their “1313” helpline are mostly marital issues and domestic violence.
Awa Bling an anti-SGBV activist and musician known for her songs which create awareness also performed her song “Bul Faleh”.
All three songs are dedicated to the fight against SGBV/FGM because they believe passing information can take many forms so they decided to use music to educate people.
“The reason for coming up with the songs was mainly to address the issues of Gender Based Violence, women don’t speak out because sometimes the violence is conducted by a family member, it could be an uncle, a brother, or even the father and the first thing that comes to mind is don’t break the family,” said Ms Baldeh.