Safe Space Policies

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VolkanoFest is committed to promoting an inclusive and safe festival.

Our aim: to raise awareness of gender-based violence prevention, positive masculinities, gender-sensitive policies and sexual and gender diversity.

Volkano Fest Safe Space Policies

At Volkano Fest, the safety and well-being of all participants, including artists, audiences, staff, and volunteers, are our top priorities. To ensure a welcoming and inclusive environment for everyone, we have implemented the following safe space policies:

All individuals involved in the festival, whether artists, audiences, staff, or volunteers, will be referred to as “Volkaners.”

Active Participation: We encourage all Volkaners to actively contribute to maintaining a safe and secure environment at Volkano Fest.

Zero Tolerance: We do not tolerate any form of the following behaviors towards any Volkaner:

  • Physical, sexual, or emotional violence
  • Harassment
  • Unwanted physical contact
  • Non-consensual sexual attention, touching, or objectification
  • Hatred and hate speech
  • Shaming
  • Bullying
  • Intentional intimidation, stalking, or unwanted following

Enjoyment Without Confrontation: Every Volkaner has the right to enjoy the festival without encountering any of the above situations. We are committed to providing a safe space where all individuals can fully participate and express themselves without fear or discomfort.

By adhering to these safe space policies, we aim to foster a supportive and inclusive environment where everyone can celebrate and enjoy Volkano Fest to the fullest extent possible.

Thank you for your cooperation in creating a safe and welcoming atmosphere for all Volkaners. Let’s make Volkano Fest a memorable and enjoyable experience for everyone involved.


Volkano Fest Community Agreements

  • Ask for consent, respect people, their bodies, beliefs, possessions and space;
    — Volkano Fest has a zero tolerance policy towards explicit harassment and assault of any kind and nature;
    — Consent is active, conscious, voluntary, verbal and ongoing and is not limited to sexual contact.
  • Don’t be a bystander if you see someone acting in a way that seems threatening, violent or aggressive.
  • Do not tolerate sexual, verbal or physical harassment from your friends or any one else in any situation;
  • Check in with fellow Volkaner who appear to be in a threatening situation.
  • Helping and asking for help: know where the Safe Zone is and use it if you need support and / or if you witness or are involved in an assault or other dangerous situation, immediately identify yourself to a Volkano Fest staff, board member or a member of the Volkano Safety Squad (VSS*).

*VSS (Volkano Safety Squad) members can be found throughout the festival site or in the Safe Zone area.

At Volkano Fest, our commitment to creating a safe and inclusive environment is paramount. We uphold this commitment through our Volkano Fest Community Agreements and adherence to Rwandan laws.

Any Volkaner who, in the reasonable opinion of a staff or board member, violates these agreements and/or Rwandan laws will be promptly and decisively addressed. This may result in immediate removal from the festival grounds for the duration of the event.

We believe in fostering an atmosphere of respect, acceptance, and mutual consideration for all attendees, staff, and volunteers. By upholding these standards, we ensure that Volkano Fest remains a welcoming space where everyone can fully participate and enjoy themselves without fear or concern.

Thank you for your cooperation in helping us maintain the integrity of Volkano Fest as a safe place for all.


If you witness violent, aggressive or oppressive behaviour from the stage, shout it out or alert a Volkano Fest stage crew, staff or VSS member immediately;
If you witness any incidents that violate the the Volkano Fest Community Agreements anywhere on the festival site, alert a Volkano Fest staff, VSS member or board member immediately, and watch out for other artists, volunteers and staff throughout the site over the weekend.

Staff and volunteers

Respond immediately to all allegations of assault and harassment and support the victim;
Access all necessary resources to provide the support needed for the situation and the people involved;
Identify ways to make the festival a safer and more accessible space for all people;
If you’re unsure how to handle a situation, contact your line manager immediately.
It is very OK to ask for help.


Maintain respectful and safe boundaries on dance floors and in crowded areas;
Be aware of signs of distress and alert a Volkano Fest staff member, board member or VSS member if someone needs help;
Check in with your fellow Volkaners to make sure everyone is having a fun and safe festival;
If you see someone behaving in a way that makes you or anyone else feel uncomfortable or unsafe, speak up!

Situation Management Procedure

If staff, a Board member or VSS are approached about harassment or a breach of the Volkano Fest Safe Space Policies, the following procedure will be followed:

— Staff/VSS will immediately gather and record details of the assault and harassment from the victim and in support of the victim;
— VSS will provide the victim with a safe space and any resources needed;
— Any other parties involved will be spoken to about the situation;
— Any parties found by staff or a Board member to be in breach of the Safe Space Policies will be suspended or removed from the site. In cases of reasonable misunderstanding, the party at fault will be warned and removed. Please note that only staff and board members have the authority to make a decision regarding the removal of any Volkaner from the festival site.


Assault: The act of causing physical harm or unwanted physical contact to a person, or putting another person in fear of imminent harmful or offensive contact.

Consent: A voluntary, conscious, freely given, active, and specific agreement to engage in any type of contact or activity.

Discrimination: The refusal to provide goods, services, accommodation, or facilities to any person, or the treatment of any person or class of persons in a degrading or humiliating manner.

The Safe Zone: The designated area provided by the Volkano Safety Squad (VSS) within Volkano Fest grounds. Volkaners can seek assistance here for water or help with harassment or other unsafe situations.

Oppression: The unjust or cruel exercise of authority or power, whether explicit or through systemic policies and behaviors.

Threat: The implicit or implied expression of a potential act of violence, discrimination, harassment, or oppression.

Violence: The intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, against oneself, another person, or a group or community, resulting in, or having a high likelihood of resulting in, injury, death, psychological harm, maldevelopment, or deprivation.

Stalking: The repeated act of unwanted following or close proximity to an individual.

Harassment: Includes, but is not limited to:

  • Written or verbal abuse, threats, or outbursts.
  • Displaying offensive visual material.
  • Unwelcome remarks, jokes, comments, innuendo, or ridicule.
  • Leering or other suggestive or obscene gestures.
  • Condescending or patronizing behavior intended to undermine self-esteem or performance.
  • Pranks causing awkwardness, embarrassment, or endangerment.
  • Retaliation or threats against those reporting harassment.
  • Bullying.
  • Offensive or intimidating communication via phone, texts, voicemails, or emails.
  • Displaying or distributing offensive materials.
  • Any form of hazing.
  • Psychological abuse.

Zero Tolerance: Volkano Fest will address all incidents and allegations of violence immediately and supportively.

Policy Enforcement :

Any Volkaner reasonably determined by a staff or board member to be in violation of the Volkano Fest Community Agreements and/or Rwandan laws will be promptly removed from the festival grounds for the duration of the event.

Panel discussion (16 september 2023) :

INCLUSIVENESS: the role of arts and artists in promoting an inclusive and safe environment for minorities at risk
— @ Goethe Institute, Kigali

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