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The Traditional Mentoring Walk which is organized jointly by Share Your Knowledge and Academy of Woman Leadership program in Serbia this year, was held in Subotica on March 10, 2018 and aimed to highlight the need to improve visibility of women in public life and in the decision-making process, but also to show women solidarity and promotion of mentoring. The Mentor Walk in Subotica was part of the global Mentor Walk Initiative coordinated by Vital Voices and one of 150 walking in 60 countries. The Walk in Subotica was held as the 14 walk in Serbia (Belgrade, Novi Sad, Niš, Kraljevo i Valjevo).

After the Walk, a debate on the topic: Woman in Politics – from Figures to Influence, was organized, where Gordana Čomić, MP, and Aida Ćorović, Politician, shared their long-term experience in political area with the participants.

Debate was opened by Svetlana Stefanović from the European Movement in Serbia, who drew attention to the fact that "International Women's Day is a good reminder to remember all those women who gave their lives in the struggle for the realization of basic rights, starting with the right to vote, and we in Serbia, we still face the basic problems due to the lack of, among other things, the Law on Gender Equality, but also the problems related to domestic violence. Only the joint struggle of both women and men can lead to equality in society."

Marija Srdić, a member of the Program Council of the Academy of Women Leadership and a mentor on the Program Share Your knowledge who moderated the debate on Women in Politics - from presence to influence, recalled on data reserach that suggests that men are more often candidates for republican elections and women for the lower level of government (usually local level). There is also a declarative , but not essential support for women leadership in political parties. Men do not recognize enough problems that women have in advancing to leadership positions or the potential benefits of women leadership in politics as a whole.

Gordana Čomić told to young women that „I am out of politics" is a bad narrative because if you do not deal with politics, she will deal with you. "We are all from politics, which constantly creates the lives of millions of people. It's a difficult and responsible job, but at the same time one of the most creative." Her message to women who want to deal with politics is to learn to say NO. "Say NO is more powerful than any abuse because every NO change the world." Gordana's recipe for survival in politics, one of the most cruelly arena, is a solid ethical attitude that is not being compromised. In the end, she said that for equality we should fight together with men in order not to produce a counter-effect - a generation of men who do not have defined gender roles. "Leave the men in the sphere of your life where you do not think they belong. The result will surprise you."

Aida Ćorović pointed to the danger of closing in the comfort zone. "It is necessary to break the cords, to work on yourself and to develop constantly," she said. Aida began her engagement as an activist who spoke against the war. She entered politics when she understand that in that way she can make significant changes in society. "Challenges are an integral part of dealing with politics, as well as any other business, but this is not a reason to give up. Moral integrity and knowledge are supportive strengths to resist." The message of encouragement for young women is to deal with politics "because it can be a great job if you follow your vision and do not compromise."


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