New Jersey: The Middlesex County Center for Empowerment, Sneh Arts, and Manavi collaborated to host a community outreach event to increase awareness surrounding sexual violence. The center is the state designated sexual violence program for Middlesex County. The event was aimed at bringing the issue into community consciousness and raising awareness about the services offered by the Center and Manavi to support survivors in the South Asian community.
Nahrin Khan, outreach consultant for the Center, said, “When it comes to South Asian culture, it is important to recognize that there is deep rooted patriarchy that is functioning within the collectivist tradition. In many instances, women are subjugated, subordinated and subservient, within our communities, and our world view encourages conformity to those traditional fixed gender-based roles creating unhealthy expectations that often lead to violence.”
Representatives from Manavi, Shanti Shah and Amritha Sridhar spoke about Manavi’s services. Jennifer Kurdyla of the center spoke about it’s services.
Following the presentation, attendees were treated to soul stirring classical music and dances by artists from the Indian Diaspora. Prominent community members present at the event included Seema Jagtiani, Joyce Mehta, Minesh Patel, Hemant, and Dilip Bhatt.