Theatre Wallay, in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), and the School of Leadership Foundation (SoLF) has embarked on a mission to raise awareness and spark a discussion on social norms around the reproductive health of young people, gender-based violence, child marriages and more, across Pakistan. The series of performances was launched in Rawalpindi on 9th October from a school run by the Anam Education Foundation.
The play is titled ‘Baat Karo Bhai Baat Karo’, and it emphasizes the need to talk about the issues which are considered taboo in our society. Staying silent will never solve our problems.
Under the umbrella of the Hifazat campaign, initiated by UNFPA Pakistan and SoLF in 2022 to enhance reproductive health and wellbeing awareness through digital media, this groundbreaking project will bring the power of theater to the forefront to foster meaningful discussions within communities across 10 districts in Pakistan.
Twenty impactful theater performances will be held to ensure a widespread reach across provinces. These performances will take place in Charsadda, Swabi, Swat (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa); Lasbela (Balochistan); Rawalpindi, Multan, and Bahawalpur (Punjab); as well as in Sukkur, Khairpur, and Larkana (Sindh).
Premiering in Rawalpindi, the performance was met with a resounding applause from the audience. One participant highlighted the importance of sensitizing elders to these crucial issues. ‘This play should be performed for our elders as they must learn how to discuss reproductive health and child marriage with their children. They need to understand that child marriage is detrimental and harmful,’ said Nasir Khan of the Anam Education Foundation.
Post-performance discussions and awareness sessions will follow each theater performance to encourage ongoing dialogue and deep reflection. Through these interactive sessions, we aim to provide community members with the opportunity to share their perspectives, ask questions, and engage in further conversation to enhance their understanding of key topics affecting us all.
“This play should be performed in rural communities in the far-flung areas of Gilgit-Baltistan, and Balochistan where these issues are prevalent”, highlighted Shoaib Ali, a young boy who attended the theater performance in Stars College, Rawalpindi.
The play is written and directed by Safeer Ullah Khan who has been working for Theatre Wallay since 2010 and has contributed significantly to the growth of Theatre Wallay. He also conducts the Acting Class in Islamabad. The project is being supervised by Fizza Hasan, Artistic Director, Theatre Wallay.
The cast includes Imran Iftikhar, Tayyab Ali, Faizan Asad, Anum Arooj, Iqra Altaf, Faizan Ahmad, and Azam Hameed.
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