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Photo credit: Royal Norwegian Embassy, Dhaka.
The Nordic embassy in Dhaka, capital of Bangladesh, in a unique move, displayed sculptures created by the Rana Plaza survivors presented at the Nordic club on Monday, ahead of International Women’s Day today, reports bdnews24.com
According to the joint embassy of Sweden, Denmark and Norway – the exhibition was aimed at showcasing the real life examples of how women, despite adversities, take control of their own lives in Bangladesh.
The Rana Plaza building collapse in 2013 killed over 1,100 people, mostly workers, and left many more injured.
Many of the women were trained under a project, “Sculptures for Survival”, supported by the Danish embassy.
Last year, a workshop was conducted for them following which they created sculptures which were later sold.
The funds raised were donated to Meena, an NGO working for the rehabilitation of these victims.
The survivors started their own income generating activity by establishing a sewing workshop with the funds.
A Bangladeshi RMG company and its Danish partners donated machines and provided technical expertise.
The Nordic embassy and its partners in the “Sculptures for Survival” project, and Shako – Women Artist Association of Bangladesh, joined hands and helped the survivors to create sculptures again.
This time the exhibition aimed to celebrate Women’s Day 2016 through emphasising the empowerment of these brave women.
Through the workshop, the women have now created new sculptures expressing powerful messages of their new empowered state.
“Each sculpture is an example of how women can step up and make a positive difference for themselves,”
Women’s empowerment is “a central pillar” in Danish development efforts, while gender equality is “fundamental” for Sweden’s development cooperation. Norway is a “strong supporter” of women’s rights in Bangladesh.
This year the joint embassy undertook different kinds of programmes to celebrate Women’s Day.
However, the embassy had to cancel the screening of an experiential documentary art film, “Dead Hands Rising”, by award winning director Khalid Mahmud Mithu. The film-maker died in Dhaka on Monday afternoon when a tree fell on him.
At the reception on Monday night, the organizers and participants observed a minute’s silence to mourn the sudden demise of the artist.
The Danish embassy in Dhaka has selected a girl student as “Shadow Ambassador” for Tuesday to promotewomen’s leadership.
See more at the Royal Norwegian Embassy’s website at www.norway.org.bd
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