Manifesta is a digital platform where feminist organizations and activists can run their own campaigns and build an informed and influential global community of like-minded gender equality and women’s human rights supporters. Manifesta was an outcome of the April 2013 Innovation & Action on Resource Mobilization for Women’s Rights meeting hosted by the Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID), Mama Cash, and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Feminists Ana Criquillion and Maz Kessler are the catalysts behind the Manifesta project.
In January 2018, Tata Traoré-Rogers was appointed as the organization’s new Executive Director. Traoré-Rogers steps into this role, ready to guide Manifesta into becoming the online platform of global sisterhood it was meant to be, closing the gap between awareness of feminist issues and concrete feminist activism.
An “incubator” team made up of key women’s human rights organizations led the initial phase of development. This group includes the Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID), Catapult, Mama Cash, Prospera (International Network of Women’s Funds), Global Fund for Women and the Association for Progressive Communications (APC).
Co-Founder, Ana Criquillion, commented that “Traoré-Rogers is a true global citizen with an intercultural perspective. She has lived in Africa, Europe and North America and she currently lives in New York City. She is fluent in several languages, and has extensive local and international organizing, advocacy and management experience. I am certain Tata’s unique perspective and depth of experience will be instrumental in navigating the complexity of this work and will benefit our global community immensely.”
Tata has served as Executive Director of Turning Point Brooklyn, a local NYC community-based organization, as well as Deputy Executive Director of the Astraea Foundation, an international organization dedicated to supporting groups that work for human rights for LGBTQI people, advancing gender, racial, economic and social justice worldwide. She is also an Adjunct Professor at CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College, as well as an international meeting planner, facilitator, and coach.
In accepting the position Traore-Rogers said “the need to practice feminist principles andvalues has never been more urgent. I am so thrilled to be leading a venture that will give women all over the world the opportunity to voice opinions, connect with each other, and organize using their keyboards as a tool of change”
The next stage in Manifesta’s life comes at a time when the platform is needed more than ever before. We are surrounded by examples showing us the need for more women’s human rights work: in Lebanon, Tunisia and Jordania, an archaic law allowing men accused of rape to be exonerated and escape punishment if they married the individual they raped was finally repealed; in Macedonia feminist activists inspired by #MeToo, #TimesUp movements created #СегаКажувам (#ISpeakUpNow); murdered environmental justice activist Bertha Caceres supporters and other human women’s human rights defenders demanding environmental justice everywhere.
As the only global online feminist organizing tool dedicated to providing mutual support to gender-justice advocacy and fundraising campaigns, Manifesta will play a key role in maximizing the solidarity and impact of local and global feminist resistance mobilizing.