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We Care Film Fest is the only festival in the world which is travelling to educational institutions including mass communications institutes and disability institutions to make people aware and sensitise them on human disability issues. On 18th Jan.2011, it came down to Mumbai.

At the Y B Chavan auditorium, the sensitive film maker Govind Nihalani inaugurated the same. He said “there was urgent need to assess the impact of films and other initiatives taken for creating a greater awareness among the general public about the problems of the disabled. Films on Disability should create inspirations and not pity.It would be interesting to know if the festival which had been held since 2003 had in fact made any impact on the institutions where it was held or on the people who had come and seen the films. He expressed the hope that the Tata Institute for Social Sciences which had a disability centre would help in this regard.”

Another speaker Rajiv Chandran, who is the Information Officer of United Nations Information centre for India and Bhutan, made a call to Corporates to come forward and help such film ventures financially as a part of their CSR. He also revealed the UNIC had decided to recognize the Festival since it lived up to the aspirations of the Convention passed by the United Nations in May 2008 on the rights of the Disabled.

Renowned ad filmmaker Prahlad Kakkar said that parents did not often recognize a disability – especially if it was mental – early enough to take action to check it. He said that he had cone across many cases where a child was prevented from doing what he wanted just because the parents did not realize his aspirations..

Festival founder Director Satish Kapoor said he had started the Festival in a very small manner but the response had encouraged him to take it all over the country. This year the Festival may travel to all the SAARC countries under the auspices of UNESCO, and had also been invited to Turkey. The Festival had received films from all over the world.

This year a total number of 67 documentary films in four categories – up to one minute, up to five minutes, up to 30 minutes, and up to 75 minutes - from India and from various other countries like the USA, Canada, Israel, the UK, Indonesia, Spain, Italy, Brazil, Australia, Nepal etc. are being exhibited.

Mr Sandeep Marwah of the Asian Academy of Film and Television said he had supported the venture from its very first year because of the importance it gave to creating awareness and for reflecting only disabled achievers in the films shown.

Prof. R R Rangasayee, Director of the Ali Yavar Jung National Institute for the Hearing Handicapped (AYJ NIHH) and a national award winner, said in his welcome address that the purpose of a festival of this kind was not merely to highlight the problems faced by the disabled, but to highlight their achievements despite the difficulties they faced. He said that if they were given equal opportunities, they could contribute to society as others.

Director and story-teller Amole Gupte, IDPA General Secretary Sanskar Desai, and filmmaker Gulbahar Singh were also present among others. The Filmfest was launched in the presence of various local partners - both government and non-governmental - of Mumbai including the AYJNIHH, the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), the SNDT Women’s College,the ADAPT, the Helen Kellar Institute for Deaf & Deaf-blind and Trinayani- working on Disability Awareness and Support. Cinema Lovers is online partner and promoting the film festival through web.

The We Care Filmfest on Disability Issues was launched by Delhi-based non-governmental organization Brotherhood in 2003 and has become a brand when it comes to film festivals on disability both nationally and internationally. It is planned to organize the film festival at 25 venues including educational institutions, Universities, Hospitals etc. across India, including SAARC countries (Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bhutan) from January to May 2011. Some of the venues which have confirmed are Tata Institute of Social Sciences, AYJ NIHH, Mumbai, SNDT Women’s College, Tezpur University, Manipal Institute of Communication, Manipal University etc.

Written by: 

Mohan Siroya



It is very good to create an awareness about disabilites!

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