The Little Art held an evening of EquallyLoud Film screening event on Friday, 30th August, 2019 where it showcased films of children and youth and held an open discussion on topics of gender equality. The event was a well-executed array of activities. Starting from a welcome note, to panel discussion be supreme enthusiasts in the particular field of Arts and Social Sciences. The evening was attended by several participants and stars of the night; the children and youth filmmakers and their proud parents themselves.

Moderated by Founder/ of The Little Arts, Mr. Shoaib Iqbal, the panel discussion included Asghar Nadeem Syed – Pakistani play & drama writer, Muneeza Hashmi – Director Lahore Arts Council, Sohail Warraich – Women Rights’ Activist, Member of the National Commission on the Status of Women and Co-ordinate Commission’s Committee on Law and Policy, Iftikhar Mubarak – Executive Director Children Advocacy Network Pakistan and Sajida Vandal – Vice Chancellor Institute of Arts and Culture (IAC).

Sharing anecdotes were the prestigious panelists. During the panel discussion, Asghar Nadeem Syed said

“After witnessing the work through these films, I would like to highlight and appreciate few things. All the children who created these films were from underprivileged backgrounds and I’m very happy to see that you have inspired and mentored them to come out and express themselves as no one has ever given them this opportunity because of absence of such facilities. Secondly kudos to the TLA team for creating awareness and enabling children to express matters that are usually ignored”.

The anecdotes continued when Asghar Nadeem Syed reminisced the time he spent doing and creating drama and uplifting the film and TV industry of Pakistan. Ms. Muneeza Hashmi also stressed that

“EquallyLoud by the Little Art has started a great debate as usually these topics are seldom discussed or are left unaddressed. In such cases, continuity is key and I would urge the team to take this even further ahead.”

Sajida Vandal expressed her feeling by saying

“It is the children’s voice. It touches the heart and I think it will touch the heart of the audience as well. A lot of important issues have been raised and implemented in a very delicate way. If you look at the faces of the children, they were all smiling; nobody was bored. This shows that the message does reach out. And obviously when these kids have gone home and spoken about what they’re doing, then I don’t think this remains within the classroom.” 

The screening of the films was a reflective moment for all attendees. Consisting of a short preview of the entire genre of EquallyLoud and the idea of gender stereotypes, this segment of the evening was appreciated and shared several times later on social media; winning hearts, likes and shares of everyone who was not present. To name a few posts of appreciation out of the many were made by

An outcome of the Lahore International Children Film Festival (LICFF) calendar workshops, ‘Equally Loud’ aims to transform the narrative of Pakistani women and girls from a purely rights-based discussion to a more personal and impactful dialogue. In order to conduct this, TLA is giving workshops across schools of Pakistan, providing them with basic skills and equipment of film making.  A total number of 340 children from 10 schools across Lahore and Faisalabad, boys and girls, were a part of a directory and production of untold stories of breaking gender stereotypes, gender equality, issues of transport and access, body shaming, and equal opportunities. These non-profit workshops were conducted by filmmakers Ammar Aziz, Fazal Ahmad, Abdul Basit and gender specialists Sehyr Mirza and Nida Mushtaq.