“Condemned” - Forum Theatre Play on Gender-Based Violence (Video)

February 14, 2024

In a powerful display of theater and dialogue, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) recently spotlighted the pressing issue of violence against women and girls in North Macedonia through a poignant forum theater performance held in Bitola and Skopje. As part of the “16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence campaign”, the event drew attention to the harrowing realities many women face, using the stage to ignite critical conversations among the youth and community members.

The performance unfolded in two acts, each delving into scenarios that, unfortunately, mirror the struggles within our society. The first act depicted a young girl who becomes a victim of cyber coercion and blackmail after sending private photos to a boy she trusted. In situations like this, instead of receiving support, girls are facing blame and judgment from the people around her and the general public, highlighting the victim-blaming culture that often obscures the real issue—the perpetrator's criminal actions.


In the second act, the narrative shifts to a woman trapped in the cycle of domestic violence, desperately seeking help from institutions that relativize the situation and dismiss her pleas, leading to a femicide. These stories, though fictional, reflect a grim reality for many, underscoring the systemic failures and societal attitudes that contribute to the perpetuation of gender-based violence.

Following each act, the floor was opened for discussion, allowing the audience, predominantly young people, to voice their thoughts and engage in a much-needed dialogue. One young attendee remarked, "It's shocking to see how quickly we blame the victim without recognizing the real problem. We need to change our mindset and stand against such injustices," commented one of the young attendees.

Another participant added, "The play was a wake-up call. It's not just about raising awareness but also about what we can do as individuals and communities to support victims and hold perpetrators accountable."


The forum theater event not only served as a mirror reflecting societal issues but also as a catalyst for change, encouraging the youth to question and challenge the norms and biases that enable violence against women and girls.

Statistics from North Macedonia reveal a concerning landscape of gender-based violence. According to recent data, one in three women have experienced some form of violence, highlighting the urgent need for interventions and support systems that can effectively address and prevent such abuses.

The UNDP, through events like this forum theater, aims to foster a society where women and girls can live free from violence and discrimination. By engaging communities in meaningful conversations and using the arts as a vehicle for social change, the UNDP is committed to creating a safer, more equitable world for all.


As the performance concluded, the message was clear: the fight against gender-based violence requires the collective action of individuals, communities, and institutions. It's a call to action for all of us to stand in solidarity with survivors and to work tirelessly towards a future where such violence is relegated to the past.

The video was produced within the project “Youth 4 inclusion, equality and trust” implemented in cooperation with UNFPA, UNESCO and UN Women with financial support from the UN Peacebuilding Fund. The theatre play was produced by UNDP in the framework of the project “Combatting Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in the Digital Sphere” financially supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Republic of Korea.