Afghanistan’s first-ever Environmental Short Film Contest
5 June 2016, Kabul – Today is World Environment Day and here in Afghanistan we celebrated with the country’s first-ever Environmental Short Film Contest.
Organized by UNDP in partnership with Saba TV and the National Environment Protection Agency (NEPA), the contest aimed to raise awareness and encourage action to tackle environmental challenges facing Afghanistan.
Afghan videographers submitted more than 50 films exploring climate change, land degradation, biodiversity and the impact of harmful chemicals. Out of 50 films, 23 were shortlisted for screening on Saba TV, giving everyone a chance to vote for their favourite. The final winners received their prizes today at an awards ceremony in Babur Gardens.
- UNDP marked World Environment Day with Afghanistan’s first-ever Environmental Short Film Contest.
- “PH”, by Hasam Perqadam, which focuses on the devastating impact of deforestation, won best animation.
- “Silent scream”, by Fatima Hussaini, which explores how everyone has a personal responsibility for their environment, won best drama
- Afghanistan was ranked second in a list of countries most affected by extreme weather events in 2016’s Global Climate Risk Index.
- Only 12% land is available for farming and forest cover has been reduced to less than 3%.
- Funded by the Global Environment Facility's Small Grants Programme and implemented by UNDP.
The ceremony will be broadcast on 6th June 2016 on Saba TV from 9pm onwards.
Prizes included best animation, drama, script, actor and director, with winners chosen by a panel of independent jurors, including filmmakers and civil society activists. An additional Voters Choice prize went to the film that received the most votes through text messaging from the public.
“Environmental protection requires awareness and buy-in from everyone affected – which means everyone in Afghanistan,” said Robert Few, Chief of Communications for UNDP Afghanistan. “These films have already reached more than 4 million people on Saba TV and social media. We hope they inspire further action to protect Afghanistan’s natural beauty and resources.”
Afghanistan was ranked second in a list of countries most affected by extreme weather events in 2016’s Global Climate Risk Index. Only 12% land is available for farming and forest cover has been reduced to less than 3%. This has devastating implications for the 85% of Afghans who rely on natural resources to make a living.
Several of the winning films examined these critical issues. Prize winners included:
Best animation: “PH”, by Hasam Perqadam, which focuses on the devastating impact of deforestation.
Best drama: “Silent scream”, by Fatima Hussaini, which explores how everyone has a personal responsibility for their environment.
Best script: “Bonesetter”, by Lal Mohammad Alizada, which highlights the importance of trees.
Best actor: Farzana for her role in the film “Young Citizen”, which explores how the way we treat the environment affects the moral development of children.
Best director: Ahmed Wahed Omidi, for his film “The Hunter”, which focuses the effects of climate change and drought.
Funding for this initiative came from the Global Environment Facility’s Small Grants Programme and Saba TV.
In partnership with the government, the international community and the people of Afghanistan, UNDP works to empower Afghan men and women to improve their lives and to help the country become more resilient. Our programmes operate in every province and cover rule of law, governance, environment, livelihoods, gender and health.
On environment, UNDP’s projects include helping people adapt and find jobs in the face of climate change, bringing clean power to rural areas, preparing for natural disasters, establishing and protecting national park, and conserving biodiversity for future generations.
The Global Environment Facility’s Small Grants Programme, implemented by UNDP, has also provided funding for 46 projects in Afghanistan on biodiversity, climate change, land degradation and sustainable forest management. These have benefitted nearly 50,000 households.