Impact Stories

Celebrating Voices and Perceptions

Meerab from Umul Madaris School, Faisalabad

“My father says that if I get you a motorbike, the entire family will be searching for you and your bike all day. I want to have my own bike, and I want to play cricket because it is my passion. It was unimaginable for me to even think of it, but after the time I have spent in the filmmaking workshop, I strongly believe that there is no such thing as a boy’s or a girl’s work. I can pursue my passion and nothing is going to stop me but myself.”

Awais from Umul Madaris School, Faisalabad

“I love watching my mother cook. The concept of mixing different ingredients and spices and transforming it into a finished product has always intrigued me. I want to become a chef when I grow up, but I don’t have support from my family on it. After some time, I stopped talking about it with my family, so it was quite surprising for me when I shared my interest in cooking with everyone during the filmmaking workshop. The trainers not only encouraged me, but my group also ended up making a short film on it. To think that my story could be shown to so many people, as well as my parents, in a cinema has motivated me much more and I hope that I gain my parents’ support after they watch the film.”

Ahmad from Umul Madaris School, Faisalabad

“I have always been a quiet, shy person, going on about my routine. Attending the filmmaking workshop has helped me understand that my dreams are valued. I have always wanted to be a fashion designer. My father owns ladies wear designer shop and I spent most of my time there after school. Fashion designing is normally considered to be something that girls do, so I never talked about it with anyone. None of my school friends and teachers knew about this, but during the workshop, I expressed my dream through the self-portrait exercise. Everyone was surprised, but not in a negative way. They motivated me to pursue my dream along with my studies and practice making designs at my free time. I will continue with it in the future and I am grateful to The Little Art team for letting me express my dream and motivating me to go with it.

Nayab from APS & Azam Garrison, Lahore

“I have always believed that girls can do everything they set their mind to. But the society makes sure that it gives importance to boys and let them do whatever they want to do, while the girls are mostly stopped from pursuing their dreams. I love playing football with my friends after school, and majority of the time, I get scolded by some of my neighbor aunties. According to them, I should not play in the park with boys and stay at home instead. But I want to let people know that the girls can do anything they want to do. When I was selected for the filmmaking workshop and got to know that we will be making short documentary films, I instantly knew what I wanted to make a film about. This workshop gave me a platform and more confidence to talk about the issue and I will continue advocating for it in the future as well.”

Rawaan from APS & Azam Garrison, Lahore

I would like to thank The Little Art for organizing such a thorough and well-organized training. The material was really interesting and the discussions were truly inspiring. I particularly enjoyed the visual illustrations, which made the content easily understandable. I was truly motivated by the videos that were shown and how women were achieving great things in every field they set foot in. This has encouraged me to go forward with my singing passion and forget about the rules set by the society for me.

Laiba from Dream Land Public School, Shahdra

“I love listening to English songs but I always hesitate singing in front of a group of people. To stand and speak in front of people especially boys has always made me nervous and confused. But one day that bubble of nervousness and confusion got busted when our trainer asked me to come and sing a few lines. I refused to come at first but then everyone in the class encouraged me and I managed to sing few lines. After listening to the song everyone praised me and they appreciated my singing. The appreciation brought a new energy in me and I know now that I have to talent to sing confidently in front of people.”

Hassan from Dream Land Public School, Shahdra

“It is always said that boys should not play with dolls and girly toys. I remember I used to play with doll houses and dolls but my parents strictly prohibited me from playing with them and asked me to play with sports car, bat and ball etc. Here in the filmmaking workshop I shared my experience regarding this and learnt that boys can also play with dolls and there is nothing wrong in it. It’s the society that has defined toys on the basis of gender and has created this discrimination and personally I don’t think there is anything wrong in playing with dolls. I’m thankful to our trainer who cleared this deep seated misconception of our minds and now I won’t feel ashamed of playing with dolls and puppets.”

Hafsa from The Trust School Amir Town, Girls Campus

“When I told my mother about the filmmaking workshop she didn’t appreciate much and said it will waste your time. She said you need to focus on your studies instead of these activities. However, I convinced her and attended the five-day workshop. The Workshop was very productive and it helped me in regaining my confidence. When i did the role reversal activity and acted as a boy, I enjoyed very much. I was very expressive and confident before but through this workshop I learnt that girls are no less than boys and they can also do what they aspire to do. When I told my mother about how productive the workshop was, she became very happy and when she came to our school and saw my documentary, she appreciated me a lot and to my surprise she even showed my rap singing videos to the The Little Art team. I had never seen my mother this much proud before.”

Esha from The Trust School Amir Town, Girls Campus

“I have an undying passion and love for fashion designing. I even have a scrapbook in which I have drawn several designs and dresses. That diary is really close to my heart. During the workshop when I got the chance to speak about the different professions and fields, I opened up about mine too. Usually the society thinks that medical is the only dignified field in which girls should go and it is also expected from us to bring high grades every time but I don’t think that girls should only be confined to medical fields. I love making designer dresses and I will pursue this field as a profession in future.”

Aun from The Trust School Amir Town, Boys Campus

“My thoughts are stars I can’t fathom into constellations. I have a very keen interest in astrology and how supernatural things work around us. I believe in horoscopes and love reading about them in magazines or newspapers. My parents never encouraged me to follow these things because according to them these are not the things to follow. During the filmmaking workshop I told about my interest in astrology and I think I wouldn’t have been able to speak about this if I wasn’t being a part of this amazing workshop. This workshop has taught me that all professions and fields have equal importance and now I think I will study this subject in future and will mark my name in it.”

Shumail from St. Catherine Girls High School, Faisalabad

“It is because of the filmmaking workshop that I opened up about my passion of riding a bike. Through the workshop I learnt that there is nothing a girl can’t do. My father is very supportive and he assists me in riding the bike. He is a heart patient and sometimes he doesn’t feel well and I think if I’ll learn the bike I would be able to bring his medicines and can take him to the doctor. If a boy can ride a bike then a girl can also and it’s only a stereotype that a bike is a boy’s ride. I want to break this stereotype.”

Daboora St. Catherine Girls High School, Faisalabad

“It is my dream to go in Bear Grylls Survivor series show. It’s a show in which people go on a survival mission and to stay alive. They learn to build shelter, navigate difficult situations and eat food that nature provides. I have been preparing for that for quite a few years and for this I have made a diary as well in which I have written various ways to survive in a jungle, including how to make a passage in a cave, how to make a boat etc. No one knew about my dream until I spoke in front of all the participants during the filmmaking workshop. Everyone got surprised after listening to it but I am thankful to the trainer who listened to me and supported me.”

Haider from GC University, Faisalabad

“Dancing is what I live for. I love to dance on those songs which are feminine and sung by female singers. Due to my choice of songs and dancing moves I have faced a lot of criticism and bashing from my friends and family. I once lost a job due to the negative remarks of the fellow colleagues but that didn’t stop me. People judge you a lot on your choices and in our society it’s quite common to have a judgmental attitude but I’m thankful to The Little Art who conducted this workshop and without judging me they let me speak about myself. My friends made a documentary on me and through the documentary I wanted to break that stereotype which is associated with males dancing on feminine songs.”

Hasha from GC University, Faisalabad

“We don’t appreciate the unsung heroes of our society, especially women. Their achievements are often being neglected by the people around because we live in a patriarchal society and it mostly highlights the achievements of men. Also, challenging gender roles in our society is considered as a big thing but now this perception is changing to some extent and i became really happy when I saw the videos of those women who were breaking stereotypes in our society by working as a mechanic, dhol player, biker etc. This changed my perception about all these professions and stereotypes. I’m pursuing a degree in physiotherapy and in my field I mostly see men pursuing this passion, even our cricket teams have male physiotherapists with them but now I’m aiming to practice it in future and hoping to be joining our cricket team as their first female physiotherapist.”

Sumaira from Kinnaird College for Women, Lahore

“People with bulky physique are often targeted in our society. I myself have faced a lot of comments from people on my weight and physical appearance. I remember I used to cry a lot after listening to such comments from people and that shattered my confidence. Through the filmmaking workshop I got the confidence to speak up about my experience regarding body shaming .Now I have stopped taking people’s comments seriously because they only bring negativity. I’m happy in my skin and I walk with confidence and pride.”

Dua from Garrison Academy for Cambridge Studies, Lahore

“In school we only study course subjects and most of the time we cannot speak openly about our aspirations and dreams. When people used to ask me what makes me happy, I didn’t have an answer. When I attended the filmmaking workshop conducted by The Little Art, I got my all answers. Filmmaking made me happy and this is what I want to pursue in future. I’m a very talkative person and this was the platform where I spoke my heart out. I shared my dreams and aspirations and no one stopped me and that brought more confidence in me. I’m thinking of making short films in future and I hope they would turn out good.”

Sakhi from Garrison Academy for Boys, Lahore

“It is always said that makeup is a girl’s thing and it has nothing to do with boys; that’s why in our society we mostly see female makeup artists around us. I love doing makeup. It has always fascinated me. According to me, makeup is an art and art can only be praised by those who understand and appreciate it. Professions shouldn’t be gender centric and in future I want to become a professional makeup artist because I want to mark my name in the makeup industry. After attending the workshop I am now more serious about this.”