Women in darkness use Open Streets Day to bring light to their cities: “We’ll make the night white again”


The first edition of ISCA’s Open Streets Day has acquired a crucial meaning in Turkey. In a country where women are fighting against femicide and gender inequality, women are finding the opportunity through Open Streets Day and Car-Free Days to raise their voice and say “we are here” by putting the spotlight on walking and playing in public space despite the darkness.

Around 17 Turkish cities will organise varied activities, and while a new bicycle is being designed by a group of cyclists in one city, a White Nights Event is being organised by a women’s initiative in another.

Women are told constantly that the streets are not safe for them at night. White Nights will be organised both in Athens (22 September) and Istanbul (5 October) by Atina Kolektif to resist this prejudice and emphasise the freedom and visibility of women to make the night “white” again. It is also a great example of grassroots initiatives growing beyond borders connecting Greece and Turkey behind the same cause.

The walks will begin with a meeting at a location which will be announced on their Facebook event page. Diverse activities such as singing, poetry reading, and discussions on being a woman in Greece or Turkey will be planned during the walk.

Open Streets Day is supported by the Erasmus+ Programme as an official #BeActive European Week of Sport event.