A HUMAN RIGHTS MOVIES WATCH PARTY
On the evening of 30 March 2021, human rights activists across the sub-Saharan Africa region took part in the hosting of a virtual human rights videos watch party by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation.
The Freedom and Human Rights Films Watch Party
The exhibition covered five human rights short-films that were produced by FNF Africa between 2018 and 2020. The films profile various human rights issues in the region such as human trafficking, corruption, persecution of journalists, LGBT+ rights violations and violence towards women by men.
Originally, the exhibition of the films was conceived as a physical experience, however, based on the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the approach had to be adapted. The ensuing online viewing was construed to not only be a sit-in, eat popcorn and get shocked experience. The viewers also had the opportunity to give short digital reviews of the films as the viewing progressed, while the activists were able to engage and share their own country experiences on the issue of human rights.
“This was a great initiative in making us step back and view human rights violations through the lens. I was impressed by how the producers probed viewers to critically analyse the violations”, said Nokolo Mhluzani-Matshazi who is a human rights activist from Zimbabwe.
Another activist who’s passion is in gender equality from Tanzania, Leah Mollel, noted the experience was “amazing” as the issues touched on what she experiences in her own community that need to be addressed. “We see the contribution of technology and awareness being a powerful tool of protecting human rights,” she added.
Storytelling has always been used for social change awareness. This tool cuts across cultures and backgrounds to get to the centre of what we refer to universal truths about humanity. As an institution that raises awareness on human rights issues, the films use art to show the realities that many are faced with.