To celebrate the resilience of communities of Bangladesh and the country's glorious heritage, culture, and traditions, ActionAid Bangladesh (AAB) has organised a two-day festival.
The event "Festival of Resilience: People, Planet and Possibilities" aims to encourage celebration and participation among communities in recognition of their stories of resilience.
The festival, which started Thursday in Dhaka's Gulshan 2, will end Friday.
For decades, the people of Bangladesh have faced countless challenges, such as climate and human-induced disasters, inequalities, economic instability, refugee crisis and pandemic. But every time, the mass bounced back with the power of resilience and survived with renewed vigour.
A very recent example would be the last two years, during the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic, when the collective effort of the people of this country helped communities to stay hopeful and agile, despite all the uncertainties and despair.
This innate quality and resilience of people are worth celebrating. So, ActionAid Bangladesh is organising this festival. Through a wide and immersive range of activities, the festival will help celebrate the people, their strength, joy, and solidarity.
Key attractions of the opening day included a performance by Happy Home girls; the inauguration of exhibition and kiosks; opening dialogue on the "Multi-dimensional perspective of resilience."
There was also a special "She-tales," segment, involving women leaders from the community who shared their tales of courage and resilience, and a cultural performance by the AAB Band.
On the last day of the event, there will be a flash mob by the young participants of the Activista Network of ActionAid Bangladesh.
There will also be three "Human Book Café" sessions with distinguished speakers – Imtiaz Ahmed, professor of international relations and director of Centre for Genocide Studies, University of Dhaka; Naveed Mahbub, comedian and columnist; Tania Wahab, entrepreneur, Afsan Chowdhury, journalist and researcher, Shameem Akhtar, filmmaker and media activist, and Afzal Hossain, popular actor and director.
"The knack for survival through endurance and overcoming obstacles is what makes us, as a nation, unique and commendable. At ActionAid, we felt that it was high time we celebrated this innate resilience of people – and therefore, came up with the idea of this Festival of Resilience," Farah Kabir, country director of ActionAid Bangladesh, said.
"Through this two-day event, we are going to promote the diversity of the country's culture, an attempt to learn the grassroots' resilience mechanisms, explore opportunities for potential partnerships and highlight the work of ActionAid Bangladesh for building resilience to increase awareness."