Afghanistan 21-LookListenLocalRe-engaging with Afghan voices as the world disengages
It is the 10th anniversary of Community Supported Film’s distribution of the films made by Afghans during our training project, The Fruit of Our Labor – Afghan Perspectives in Film.
It is also the 20th anniversary of the American war in Afghanistan which has ended with the collapse of the Afghan goverment and the takeover by the Taliban.
Community Supported Film’s (CSFilm) mission is to amplify local voices in under- or mis-represented communities – whether they be new immigrants in the United States, Haitians, or Afghans.
As the international community disengages, Americans are hearing very little from Afghans. In line with our mission, CSFilm launches Afghanistan 21-LookListenLocal. From now through the departure of the US coalition, Afghans will share their experiences through videos, photos, and writing.
Afghanistan 21-LookListenLocal will include:
- Single Shot Video Contest. Afghans across the country are using their phones to shoot a single unedited shot that captures the essence of their lived reality. The best entries will be awarded $300 and shared.
- Short documentary videos are being mentored through production and will become new tools to stimulate discussion.
- Blog posts are being written on Afghans that participated in CSFilm’s first training and filmmaking project, The Fruit of Our Labor-Afghan Perspectives in Film. After 10 years many are refugees again, others have developed careers in filmmaking, some are living or working in regions once again controlled by the Taliban, all are fearful that Afghanistan is returning to a civil war defined by ethnic divisions.
Single Shot Video Contest. Afghans across the country are using their phones to shoot a single unedited shot that captures the essence of their lived reality. The best entries are awarded $300 and shared. This started in June, before the takeover by the Taliban.
Introduction from Hosna:
“This video is about street kids because:
- Streets kids are under a lot of mental pressure;
- They lose the chance to get an education;
- The likelihood that they will be recruited by insurgent groups and gangs is high;
- They should play but they work.
There are thousands of kids on the street who make a living by begging, waxing shoes, washing cars and much more.”
Blog posts are being written on Afghans that participated in CSFilm’s first training and filmmaking project, The Fruit of Our Labor-Afghan Perspectives in Film. These stories were written before the takeover by the Taliban.
At a time in a country where any female in cinema is considered a cheap woman if not an outright prostitute, one needs valor, thick skin, and a tremendous threshold for suffering.
Majid starts receiving calls. Some are from Afghan members of parliament. Some are from unknown callers who reject the allegations and demand Majid to quit reporting or he might not be aboveground to receive their next call. The man on the other end of the line can be anyone. He can be Majid’s cousin who has joined the Taliban.
From a colleague in Afghanistan: Kabul city is currently surrounded by those wild creatures in this black forest. Those predators have become more savage and unrestrained than before.
Evacuation and Resettlement
These are the early days of a long, arduous, and painful process. We do not know how much money will be needed, for how long or how exactly it will be used. If for whatever reason funds aren’t needed for resettlement, we will refund your donation or ask your permission to put it to use towards our ongoing mission-based work to amplify local voices, perspectives, and experience. Thank you. Read updates on the effort below.
This sums up the future of Afghanistan. 250,000 lives lost, 20 years lost, trillions spent, and the United States managed to replace the Taliban and Al Qaeda with the Taliban, Al Qaeda and Haqqani as Interior Minister.
Please do what you can to contribute to the Afghan Evacuation & Resettlement Fund. Without it we will not save these brilliant minds and change agents from the crushing and dehumanizing blows of the Taliban.
We cannot look away. We must support these people who have contributed significantly to their country’s effort to develop through the powers of journalism, awareness building and women and human rights advocacy. The 13th century has returned, slaying musicians, journalists, enemy sympathizers, and rights activists but progress will win over the backwardness of isolationist oppression and reactionary extremism.
Community Supported Film urgently needs resources to support our Afghan colleagues. We are establishing an Afghan Evacuation & Resettlement Fund. The funds will be used for ground evacuations and resettlement support during the long process of applying for asylum in the US.
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