UN Women’s ‘HeForShe’ launches gender equality bus tour

FILE - In this Sept. 13, 2005, file photo, the flags of member nations fly outside the General Assembly building at the United Nations headquarters in New York. (AP Photo/Adam Rountree, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — A United Nations initiative that encourages men to fight for gender equality is getting on the road.

The “HeForShe” campaign is launching its #GetFree University Tour, starting September 29th in the United Kingdom. Additional legs are planned for colleges and universities in other parts of the globe in 2016.

Elizabeth Nyamayaro, who heads the initiative, told The Associated Press, “We see the youth as a big catalyst for change.”

The bus tour will bring speakers, including celebrities, to the schools to discuss issues of gender equality. Among those confirmed for stops on the UK leg of the tour are English actors Gugu MBatha-Raw and Douglas Booth.

The “HeForShe” campaign was launched last year to bring men into efforts toward gender equality. Actor Emma Watson, who played Hermione Granger in the “Harry Potter” movie series, gave a speech calling on men to get involved.

Nyamayaro said it’s time to shift the idea that it’s only a “women’s issue.”

“Once men are at the table, all of humanity can work together on this issue,” she said.

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