EU and Girl Rising celebrate the HR Day with school children

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ISLAMABAD, DEC 10 (DNA) -: The European Union Delegation to Pakistan in special collaboration with the Girl Rising organised a film screening for the local community-based school children on Tuesday at the International Labour Organisation’s Islamabad office.

The event was organised under this year’s Human Rights Day theme, ‘Youth Standing Up for Human Rights’ to highlight the role of young people and their participation in social development movements to bring change.

The event was also a part of the 5th edition of the Human Rights Reel Film Festival 2019 which also had its closing ceremony at PNCA.

Started 1 December, the ten-day festival was organised by the European Union Delegation to Pakistan, in partnership with the United Nations, sixteen EU and UN Member States, as well as educational and cultural institutions across Pakistan.

The dates of the festival also coincided with 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence – an annual international campaign ending on Human Rights Day on 10 December – celebrating the 71st anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Human Rights Reel Film Festival is partnering with Girl Rising movement for the first time expanding its audience from the youth and university students to school children. In order to reach out to children a special film ‘Girl Rising’ was screened to mark the contribution of the young people who managed to bring a positive change the world.

The film follows the inspiring stories of three young women from Haiti, Nepal and Pakistan. In the first case Wadley – a 7-year-old – refuses to let her spirit and thirst to learn be crushed in face of a devastating earthquake that destroyed her home and school.

Suma – a  6-year old from Nepal –  is forced into bonded labour and endures years of gruelling work but changes course of her life through her love for education. Hajra – 25-year-old professional football player and the captain of Pakistan women’s football team – earns recognition in a male-dominated sport through her passion for football playing.

Ambassador of the European Union to Pakistan Mrs Androulla Kaminara, Child Protection Specialist UNICEF Muqaddisa Mehreen, Captain Pakistan Women’s Football team Hajra Khan and Programme Manager Rozan Pakistan Fouzia Yasmin participated in the interactive session moderated by Multimedia Journalist Nosheen Abbas.

The film festival in its 5th edition presented 29 award winning films and documentaries from around the world on human rights issues such as freedom of expression, gender equality, access to justice, minority rights and death penalty among others from around the world.

The festival, this year, included a workshop for Pakistani Film Makers to discuss opportunities and challenges facing the film industry in Pakistan. Subsequent screenings will be held in ten cities of Pakistan, including Faisalabad, Gujrat, Islamabad, Lahore, Rawalpindi, Multan, Karachi, Peshawar, Mardan and Quetta at various universities, embassies, the Centaurus Cineplex, as well as cultural centres such as Goethe-Institute, PNCA, Chailogue and OLOMOPOLO Media, Pakistan Community Chowk Centre in Karachi.

At the event the Ambassador of the European Union to Pakistan Mrs Androulla Kaminara said, “It is important for children to be able to follow their dreams regardless of the perceived barriers such as gender discrimination. It is encouraging to see that girls are coming forward to take part in challenging professions which were previously more male-dominated.

The European Union will continue to work closely with the Government of Pakistan, especially on the protection of the rights of children, and to guard against all forms of exploitation.”

Captain Pakistan Women’s National Football team, Hajra Khan said, “’It is more important now than it has ever been to introduce basic human rights amongst other social issues to the adolescents.”

Child Protection Specialist UNICEF, Muqaddisa Mehreen while talking to children said, “You children are citizens of this country and when you belong to a country you have certain rights. Your right is that you get education, safety, protection and no one can harm you.”DNA

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