Questioning society's norms through feminist culture

Questioning society's norms through feminist culture


Text by: Sanja Janevska


Category: Civic Engagement


Tiiit! Inc. was founded in 2011 as an informal group, by Jana Kocevska - ethnologist/anthropologist, Jana Stardelova - graduate of cultural studies and Kristina Lelovac - actor. The informal group was a product of a long-term friendship and it was founded based on their experience in activism and in the field of art, culture and media. Back then, according to their website, they were just three girls in their twenties who wanted to actively engage in the field of women's rights activism and to create a new creative space in their hometown. Their group turned out to grow into a non-profit organization in December 2014, aiming to strengthen its work in this field and to continue with its engagement on a steady ground.
Tiiiit! Inc. conducts activities to actively engage and support the women rights activists and independent artists in advocating improvement of the women's rights in our society. They try to enable women to express their work and opinions to the wider public (and to the governmental bodies) by creating a non- exclusive space for constructive debate, creative exchange and networking opportunities. They work on promotion of all spectra of women's realities, urban, young, and marginalized, such as sex workers, lesbians, bisexual and transgender, ethnic and religious minorities and many other who cannot express themselves as part of the mainstream culture. In the last years their efforts are mainly focused on organization of the only feminist festival in North Macedonia - Prvo pa zensko (Firstborn girl) and the realization of the activities of Matka (Womb/Uterus) platform who advocates for free access to safe and legal abortion.
Firstborn Girl is an initiative which aims to instigate the rethinking of the meaning of the International Women's Right Day - the 8th of March, through widely open issue for discussion upon the position and role of women in today's society.
Monika Jamandilovska, who is the latest edition to the team of Tiiiit! Inc. started on this path as a volunteer and this organization and its values have grown very much to her heart. Speaking about her experience in one of the many interviews she gave, she states that she has grown up ideologically and professionally during the festival Firstborn girl. "The opportunity that this festival and the girls from Tiiiit! Inc. have given me - to work and study in a feministic space, has played an incomparable and immensely important role in building my personality", explains Monika. "Today there is nothing more important for me that working on this festival, nor there are more beautiful days in the year than these 4 festival days", added Monika.
Firstborn Girl has brought them many wonderful memories, experience, valuable friendships and networking connections to all the people involved in any way in this festival. "This is my first collaboration with the team who is behind the organization of the festival Firstborn Girl. They are a group of people who are very concerned with how they develop their feminist ideas in our cultural scene, as well as with the interrelations between the team members which are extremely professional. They are individuals who are well known in their respective fields of interest and who know how to do their job which contributes significantly to the organization that is maxed out to a level that is surprisingly high. It's such a pleasure and a great honor to have worked with people who are sincere, patient and who share the same interests with you" says for iResponsible Manja Velichkovska, one of this year's members of the organization committee of the festival.
This festival began back in 2013 and this May 2019 - they are celebrating its 7 th edition. Firstborn girl is one of the programs that Tiiiit! Inc. as an organization offers. Jana Stardelova in one of the interviews given for a non-profit Meduza, thanked the home audience as well as gave a glimpse of hope for the future: "Firstborn girl without the support from the home audience could not develop; it means the world to us and we are trying for it to be more inclusive, although we are aware that sometimes it is hard to include and introduce all gender and ethic views. Regarding what the festival offers I have to admit that we find big influence and support also on a regional level throughout friendships with feministic organizations and our participation on feministic festivals through which we are trying to follow what's going on in the region and wider and to bring that closer to our audience. The girls from Tiiiit! Inc. are always working on something new, which is why I am sure that the future will bring us even new programs other that Firstborn girl", explained Jana.
We can expect many more great things from Tiiit! Inc., as they passionately continue with their work and fight for making the society a better place to live in. Until their next great happening you can follow them on their website or Instagram fan page.