Monday, November 20, 2017

You'll do anything you can to survive, but then comes living with it.

K&M Features and Aster Productions hosted a Press Conference at Faletti’s Hotel, Lahore to announce details of their upcoming feature film DRIVEN. DRIVEN is a Michael Hudson film which is produced by Kamran Faiq and Naveed Mehmood. The film is being shot entirely within a vintage Mercedes W126 S-Class 1978. The cast includes Kamran Faiq, Amna Ilyas, Javed Sheikh, Adnan Shah Tipu, Rehan Sheikh, Omair Rana, Najia Baig and Wahab Shah.

DRIVEN is a co-production between Pakistan, Poland, UK and Russia. The project team includes Director from UK, Cinematographer from Poland, Sound Design Technician from Russia and the lead cast and crew from Pakistan. Kamran Faiq and Michael Hudson are prolific industry professionals who have worked internationally and won numerous film awards and recognition.

“It is a fantastic experience being able to work with Michael (Hudson) and such a talented international cast and crew on home ground” said DRIVEN’s female lead and acclaimed film actress Amna Ilyas at the press conference. Adding further, Amna said “Being a part of this unique collaborative experience is immensely rewarding and I hope that DRIVEN marks the start of many more good things to come for the Pakistani Film Industry.”

Kamran Faiq, the youngest film professional from Pakistan to attend the Venice Film Markets as a producer while speaking at the press conference said, “The unique thing about this film is its narrative. When I was approached by Michael to participate in this project as an actor and a producer, what struck me most about the film was the way it was written. It indulges the audience with the action on-screen. Working on this film with Amna (Ilyas), Javed (Sheikh) Sahib, (Adnan Shah) Tipu and Rehan (Sheikh) was an exceptional experience.”

DRIVEN’s award winning British film Director Michael Hudson, while speaking about his upcoming film said: “Pakistan is currently experiencing a rebirth in cinema as it begins to tell it’s stories and find it’s voice.”

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Persons with disabilities, “the world’s largest minority

Visionary Foundation Pakistan in collaboration with RutgersWPF organized 1st Karachi Symposium on SRHR and Disability here in Karachi.

More than 20 organizations working on disability was part of the Symposium with their heads and members.

Over one billion people, or approximately 15 per cent of the world’s population, live with some form of disability. Persons with disabilities, “the world’s largest minority”, often face barriers to participation in all aspects of society.

Barriers can take a variety of forms, including those relating to the physical environment or to information and communications technology (ICT), or those resulting from legislation or policy, or from societal attitudes or discrimination. The result is that persons with disabilities do not have equal access to society or services, including education, employment, health care, transportation, political participation or justice.

The development sector of Pakistan has shifted its focus to youth development, especially considering the fact that it comprises of the 64% of the total Pakistani population.

Despite the fact that many programs are being designed and implemented for the capacity development and income generation of youth, so far not much has been done for the development of youth with special needs.

Presently, majority of the vulnerable youth with special needs tends to withdraw from the society, hiding its talents and potential, while the ratio of the determined few who take up the challenge against all odds and excel in their respective fields is very small.

Mr. Rashid Khan, CEO of Visionary Foundation Said, “During the last few years, the international community increasingly recognized the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Although Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) are one of the focus points, there is still little attention given to people with disabilities in this area.”

Now this is the time we must put one step forward to discuss Disability…Mr. Rashid Khan, CEO Visionary Foundation Pakistan.

“According to the ’World Report on Disability’ released by the World Health Organization and the World Bank in June this year, around 15% of the world’s population has a disability. This means that the sexual and reproductive health and rights of a large part of the world’s population are being neglected. This is even more pronounced in developing countries, where around 80% of the world’s population is living.”

Mr. Qadeer Baig, Country Representative Rutges WPF Said“Marriage, building a family, and access to information about SRHR are less self-evident for persons with disabilities than for their non-disabled peers. People with disabilities are more often the victims of sexual exploitation and abuse. Informed consent for treatments such as sterilisation and abortion is often denied to persons with disabilities. People with an intellectual disability are at higher risk of becoming victims of unauthorized proceedings.”

Ms. Sundus Ahson, Focal Person ASK, VFP gives presentation on Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights, she ended her presentation on “Sexual Rights are the Human Rights.”.

Ms. Kishwer Zehra, Member National Assembly, from MQM said, is her speech” There are many challenges for Pakistan to create equal rights and access to sexual and reproductive health for all. Often, legislation and policy at the national level insufficiently protect the rights of persons with disabilities. Research is essential for increasing public understanding about Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights for people with disabilities. This topic needs urgent attention.”

Dr. Shahida Sajjad, Dean Faculty of Education, Federal Urdu University of Arts, Science and Technology, Mr. Noor ud Din Kaka Bhawani, President Awareness Pakistan, Mr. Zeeshan Siddiqiui, Executive Director, Markaz-e-Umeed, and Mr. Richard Geary, Executive Director, FESF shared their expert opinion.

The Symposium caters all 4 major disabilities Visually Impaired, Hearing Impairments, Physical and Mental Impairment; more than 50 people participated from all major disabilities.

About the Organization:

Visionary Foundation Pakistan is a youth lead registered organization working with a vision to develop youth and disable – friendly environment through awareness, services, training & capacity building. Educate and aware society on physical, mental, psychological and social issues, availing their basic rights, move for social development, Increase literacy rate through learning environment and ensure meaningful youth participation.

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Let’s reach the moon

On the morning of 2nd November 2014 a TEDx mega event was held in the Auditorium of Islamabad Club from 11:30 am till around 05:00 pm. This particular independent TED event was recognized as TEDx@youthclbroad. Packed with motivation and inspiration, this event was the highlight of the participant’s day.

The event promised its attendees different variety of speakers ranging from different professional careers and ages which it delivered on with full zeal and enthusiasm. The event started with the exceptional talk of Nabeel A Qadeer from Plan9 who highlighted his perspective that anything and everything is possible if you have the passion and drive to achieve your dream.

Nabeel A Qadeer

Second on stage was the exceptionally talented Hassan Sohail Siddiqui who blew the participants mind with his first ever Pakistani superhero Comic Book “Pakistan Man” and the advice to always go for a career path that you are good at no matter the consequences. His talk made you realize that if you try wholeheartedly the odds can practically end up in your favor.

Hassan Siddiqui

Third on stage was an amazing human being Ayesha Haleem who, at the tender age of 19, has accomplished leaps. Her perception and dream of changing perspectives around her gave the audience the enthusiasm to realize that anything is possible if they have the attitude of a movie star. Her talk expresses the title “about changing perceptions.”

Ayesha Haleem

As per TEDx rules a TED video was played for the audience about Hard Choices by Ruth Chang after which a 45 minute break took place. During the break a networking session was held for attendees to interact with the speakers as well as each other to have a better social standing. After the break the fourth personality to take the stage was Saad Asif. The title of his talk was “Out bit for change”. His talk gave the people listening to his every word the outlook of what and how change affects us.

Saad Asim

After Saad’s motivational talk it was Fawad Asghar. His talk revolved around the caption “doing what you love” giving us the reflection of following our personal choice careers and choices. He blew the audience’s mind with his expressive talk.

Fawad Afzal

The last on the stage was the amazing and talented Iftekhar Yezdani. His talk was captioned “Let’s reach the moon”. He gave us the perspective that nothing is impossible when you have the moon in your sight. Nothing is stopping us from reaching a point of success that we define ourselves not someone else for us.

iftekhar Yezdani

In the end it could be observed easily that all the talks had left the audience in high spirits. The event ended on a positive note with high appreciations from the audience. All in all it turned out to be a spectacular event with high praise to the speakers and the organizing team.

Linkagoal new campaign in Pakistan

Linkagoal is a San Francisco based Goal Oriented Social Network, it promotes the habit of writing goals and helps to connect individuals based on similar goals and objectives in life.

Currently numerous users on Linkagoal are creating goals based on Global Causes, the gesture is to make a difference on individual basis. This ignited the idea for them to start a national level campaign in Pakistan.

Linkagoal is running this national level campaign till the end of this December, where the idea is to involve people of Pakistan to write down their personal goals that will bring change in Pakistan. This will help them in two ways, one, it will help them build up the habit of writing goals and second, every individual can hold themselves accountable to be a part of a major change. Towards the end of this campaign, as an award, Linkagoal will select 25 winners and the grand prize winner will receive a brand new car.

Linkagoal will be reaching out to top universities, Radio, TV Shows and place hoardings to reach out to maximum number of individuals.

To influence people, Linkagoal will reach out to 10 well-respected individuals in Pakistan to write their Goal for Pakistan and appear in Linkagoal campaign video. These videos, along with the influencer’s goal will appear across social media platforms.

This will be a platform where people of Pakistan will unite to take an oath of how they, as individuals can make a difference. It will inspire many and many will have a story to tell after that goal has been accomplished.

‘The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.’

– Steve Jobs —

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Helping women now

Youth Plugged started a campaign of Breast Cancer Awareness in the month of October, which will be an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease. While most people are aware of breast cancer, many forget to take the steps to have a plan to detect the disease in its early stages and encourage others to do the same. We have made a lot of progress but still have a long way to go and need your help!

Every woman wants to know what she can do to lower her risk of breast cancer. Some of the factors associated with breast cancer — being a woman, your age, and your genetics, for example — can’t be changed. Other factors — being overweight, lack of exercise, smoking cigarettes, and eating unhealthy food — can be changed by making choices. By choosing the healthiest lifestyle options possible, you can empower yourself and make sure your breast cancer risk is as low as possible.

How can Breast Cancer Awareness Month make a difference?

We can use this opportunity to spread the word about steps women can take to detect breast cancer early.

Here are just a few ideas:

Ask doctors and nurses to speak to women about the importance of getting screened for breast cancer.

Encourage women ages 40 to 49 to talk with their doctors about when to start getting mammograms.

Organize an event to talk with women ages 50 to 74 in your community about getting mammograms every 2 years.

How can I help spread the word?

We’ve made it easier for you to raise awareness about breast cancer. For example:

Send us informative articles about Breast Cancer or stories of patients

Tweet about Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Update your status about Breast Cancer Awareness Month

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Shahid Afridi Foundation soft launch

Last month in March 2014, Foortal.pk inaugurated an extravagant tournament, Foortal BOOM BOOM T20 an online game play. Being organized by the Foortal.pk, this virtual cricket gala was held to celebrate the mega occasion of T20 Cricket World Cup 2014 so as to intensify the national cricket fever in Pakistan to the maximum. Pakistani cricket lovers were engaged in the real game throughout the T20 World Cup.

Top 50 Winners of this competition are invited to enjoy a ‘Grand Dinner Gala with Lala’ and prize distribution taking place 26th of April, 2014.

In addition to this Mr Shahid Afridi and his technology team (WaqarTech Ltd) will also do a soft-launch of SHAHID AFRIDI FOUNDATION with video documentaries and inauguration of the foundation website.

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Data and Design Connect! by Pakathon

Pakathon was launched in 3 cities (Boston, Lahore and Islamabad) in September, where there were 250 + attendees for our events and 30 projects. We partnered with groups from Harvard, MIT, Tufts, BU, Suffolk, Oxfam, HDF, LUMS and NUST, and our panel of judges provided $10K in seed money.

Our mission is to connect entrepreneurs, researchers and technologists from Pakistan to those around the world to create projects and companies that can make an impact. We host events and meet-ups both online and offline to foster these connections because we believe that geographical boundaries should not limit us in realizing projects that can make an impact in Pakistan and the world.

We are now bringing Pakathon to Karachi, Pakistan’s largest city! “We have been working with some of the most prominent public sector organizations over the past few months and are excited to launch the Data and Design Connect! Create a software application for Aman/Civil Hospital to aid hospitals coordinate, help TCF reach schools in remote villages, visualize K-Electric’s theft challenges by using advanced analytics or use design thinking to help NOWPDP make a Pakistan that is accessible for the handicapped

How This Works

1.     Organizations provide us a problem they are facing

2.     The Challenges are publicized through the launch event in Karachi and through our chapters in Pakistan and North America

3.     Judging criteria is:

a) Originality of solution

b) Ease of implementation

c) How well does the project solve the problem?

4.   Winner is finalized by the prescribed deadline and  prizes will be awarded to winning teams!

Registrations

April 10th– May 9th: Register your team online. The ideal team will have 4-6 people from different backgrounds (technology, design, business, engineering and so on) and from different cities. If you do not have a team, don’t worry; you can use our facebook page to connect with and meet people by listing your idea and the skills you are looking for

Each team needs to have at least one member in Karachi. 

May 10th: Launch event at Aman Tech in Karachi, where representatives from organizations present their problems to all teams in detail and elaborate on judging criteria. Networking after the event, where interdisciplinary team formation will be supported and organization representatives will answer questions. 

May 10th- June 13th: Teams will work on solutions to the problems. There will be opportunities to meet the organizations for assistance throughout the month. Teams with mult-city members should coordinate virtually to collaborate. 

June 14th:Final submissions due. 

June 21st: Closing ceremony, prize distribution and ideas discussion.

Event is open to anyone from any city in the world, but you must have at least one team member in Karachi. 

Registration and details about the challenges can be found here: http://goo.gl/Vn91uS

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Green Karachi, Clean Karachi

Let’s Own Karachi, Be a part of Sarsabz o Pursakoon campaign and identify an area within their jurisdiction where plantation can take place, Whether a large plot school factory community center masjid restaurant, Any place you will be able to monitor growth. Government Will do it on its own lands like parks and roads

They will provide the plants in collaboration with the Forest department so only eco friendly plants are grown in Karachi instead of quick growing but harmful ones like the Conocarpus you see all around
Government’s commitment is sourcing the right plants and civil society will play their role by planting them in the areas band taking care of them.

We have seen the wasted tree plantation schemes of government when it does not involve the citizens, No one takes care, That’s why they are calling on youth groups and communities to take part in an activity of which they will be the ultimate beneficiaries.

This is not just a campaign with a photo sessions but with long term positive results for our city.

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Afridi played 27 Tests, 378 One Day Internationals, and 73 Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is) for the Pakistani national team. He made his ODI debut on...