Monday, January 31, 2011

Puppet Show Teaches Pakistani Children about Peace and Happiness

From TheSpec.
Today TheSpec reports on a new puppet/storytelling/art show that aims to teach the children of Pakistan about peace and happiness, states of mind that children in especially war-torn regions may have never experienced.

As Jahan Zeb, the project leader, says, "When we were growing up, there was peace. There was happiness in those villages … towns and cities. Now our children, our (second and third) generations, they don’t know. Was there happiness? Was there some hope? They don’t believe. They don’t know what is hope."

Zeb became motivated to start a peace project when the Taliban took over the Swat region of Pakistan, where his wife's family lived. He created the Art and Peace Education Exchange (or APEX) with Journey of Peace.

The project itself is a 16-part series of stories told through puppets. The stories deal with a displaced Afghan family and have been included in the school curricula of Afghanistan provinces Kandahar, Kabul, and Samangan since 2007. In Pakistan, the stories will be translated and adapted from dealing with landmines, which are prevalent in Afghanistan, to dealing with terrorism and suicide bombing.

The project just had their first show in Canada at The Pearl Company.

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