The RSA is developing a project to promote positive and alternative narratives about Pakistan, to counterbalance the predominantly negative Western media coverage of the country, and to showcase some of the many community links between Britain and Pakistan.
Working in close collaboration with www.thesamosa.co.uk, the work will identify civic activists - Diaspora ChangeMakers - within the British Pakistani Diaspora (BPD) and facilitate their involvement and broader BPD community with civic activity in both the UK and Pakistan using the medium of film. The project builds on the Pakistan Calling platform, which you can access online. Working with filmmakers from Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad and London Metropolitan University, we have already produced and curated 46 films looking at identity, education, equality, health, development, conflict resolution, women, tolerance and minority rights issues in both Pakistan and the UK.
New films are also being made by students in Pakistan and by young people in colleges including Luton, Leyton East London, Manchester and Bradford. If you are interested in finding out more including how to submit a film, visit the Pakistan Calling web pages.
We are planning screenings and panel discussions of the films including outside of London. The film platform is an excellent educational and cultural resource that can be used by academics, women’s groups, teachers, and all working with young people. All films are in English or have subtitles.
In areas where there are communities contending with social exclusion and racial tension, the films can be used to raise aspiration, showcase role models, understand and appreciate differences between communities, cultures and build shared common ground.
We are keen to draw on resources within the Fellowship to provide input and advice as the project progresses. If you have Pakistani heritage and/or strong interests in Pakistan and wish to be involved in a project steering group, please contact International Project Manager Laura Southerland on firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can read more about Pakistan Calling in an article by one of the project leaders Anwar Aktar (follow him at @aakhtar) on Philanthropy Impact.