Narotan Singh didn’t think there was anything wrong with staring and commenting on the attire of his female passengers, until he took a class on gender sensitivity. “We used to think ‘I only had a little look at what she was wearing’ or 'I only made that comment for her own good’ but now we realize that it’s really none of our business and we should not judge women, but respect them.”
Singh is one of 40,000 auto-rickshaw drivers in Delhi who participated in the course created by the charity Manas Foundation to challenge attitudes about gender equality.
Suaad Allami, an Iraqi lawyer who advocates on behalf of women, is the recipient of the 2014 Fern Holland Award from Vital Voices. Allami founded Iraq’s first legal clinic for women, Women for Progress. Her clinic provides free representation and legal counseling for women clients, who are oftentimes victims of gender-based violence. In addition to providing legal assistance, Women for Progress also provides free healthcare and medical services.