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Faridah Shakoor

Abloom Filmfestival

Abloom Filmfestival gathers children, youth and parents, to reduce the taboos connected to disabilities. The primary target group is minority families, in which the taboo of disabilities is most profound. Abloom Filmfestival aims to reduce isolation, loneliness, and low self-esteem that the children with disabilities often experience.

Problem

In Norway, children and youth with disabilities feel excluded and not integrated in the society. Many parents from minority groups feel shame, guilt, and punished for having a disabled child, caused by a lack of knowledge, and the fact that there is a stigma in relation to having a child with a disability in the community. This leads to isolation, loneliness, lack of network and friends, little or no access to the support system, and a feeling of not being accepted for the child.

Solution

To solve the problem, Faridah created Abloom Filmfestival, which is Norway´s first and only film festival focusing on diversity among children, especially those with disabilities. Faridah founded Abloom Filmfestival as a platform to help children with disabilities come together and meet others like themselves, creating a community based on solidarity and cohesion. The vision for Abloom Filmfestival is to fight taboos related to having disabilities and change parents’ and other people’s mindsets around this issue. Its goal is to make the children feel loved and appreciated for the way they are by creating new friendships and a sense of belonging. Since the inception of the festival, Faridah has seen the number of participants drastically increase from 100 participants in 2012 to 2000 participants in 2015.

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