Over 5000 people attended the festival with an audience by women, youth and the participation of the whole local community. This year the festival has truly become a very participative events made with the community, with endorsement of the elderly of Thiaroye and a very active involvement of women association. Youth groups have directly contributed to the festival as part of the organisation, volunteering and offering their creativity and resources. Media attention was very strong this year, with every day participation of journalist and some of major local radio and press to collect interviews, have direct
reportage on air and contribute to spread the message on human rights.
As the pre-festival screenings in the squares and streets of Thiaroye were very participated by the people of the community, we have extended the festival venues to include also some specific sites of Thiaroye, as Moussa Sy Terrain or Gessut Terrain, together with the Centre Culturelle Jacques Chirac. This has increased involvement and participation and made the festival be felt even more as their own by the people of the community in Thiaroye, who directly contributed in realising the events every day. The people of the community – from the elderly of the community to the women association and the youth of the
banlieue – have participated to the festival therefore not as just audience or spectators but as active producers of an important event in their own community for human rights.
We have engaged strongly in making sure the film screenings were anticipated and followed by discussions on the themes to raise awareness and debate together on possible solutions, involving local and international organisations such as Marie Stopes International and UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund), Association Andando Soxoli Sunu Gox ensemble pour le development de notre quartier pour la sensibilisation des jeunes filles du quartier, Daara des Talibès (coranic schools).
The festival was a very special opportunity for the community to receive free health checks, family planning consultations and vaccinations – thanks to the collaboration with Marie Stopes International and UNFPA (United National Population Fund), more than 500 women, girls and children have been treated by the nurses and doctors at the festival through a mobile medical unit which offered health checks, free vaccinations and consultations on family planning, early marriage and for the prevention of HIV/AIDS.
Strong links and connections have started throughout this festival that we are now emerging as a new network of organisations, community associations and actors in Thiaroye that work together for raise awareness and create social change at the local level, in connection with global international partners. This year we have infact initiated local important partnerships and started important discussions on specific issues – such as health and emancipation of women and street
children – which we will develop together throughout the year to find ways towards change in the community. We will create together next festival edition to make it even more participative and effective for a positive impact on the community.
We have screened 6 feature fiction films, 9 short fiction films, 1 short doc film, 3 feature doc films – in total 19 films throughout december 2013 and january 2014. all films were highly participated by an audience of around 200-300 people each screening.