Under the title ‘A Celebration of Egypt’s Youth and the Spirit of Volunteerism’, El-Sawy Culturewheel held a UN-sponsored cultural awareness day on Wednesday, 3 November.
Twelve booths encouraged young people to join various UN communities, including UNICEF, UNAIDS, UNV, UN Women, and Y-Peer Egypt. Activities included writing, editing, education, film, photography, and multimedia.
“I’ve been volunteering at Y-Peer for five years now and hope to encourage more people to join our community,” Ahmed Kashkoosh told Ahram Online. Y-Peer Egypt, a partner of the UN, works on education projects for both children and adults.
The Y-Peer booth displayed an appealing comic book entitled Ish Hayatek (Live Your Life) that attracted a large crowd and encouraged many to join their community. Each page focused on a social problem and how the youth can help resolve it. Topics included drug addiction, smoking, nutrition, family planning, HIV, and child marriages. “A light and artistic approach is a great way to reach out to young people,” said one of the attendees.
Nearby, a young man with a white board and a black pen drew sketches highlighting the negative effects of smoking. However, as the crowd around him grew, his drawings became more political in their subject matter. He remained anonymous, tied to his drawings, letting his pen do the talking.
The Wisdom Hall at El-Sawy was dedicated to music, theatre, and film, and also attracted large crowds.
The Masar Egbari musical group and solo singer Shady Ahmed performed last night.
A number of short films about volunteering and UN development projects around the globe were followed by a short discussion about the organisation and its projects.
There was a performance by Al-Sameteen (The Silent) dance troupe, comprised of deaf performers trained by Reda Abdul Aziz, who have grown in fame since 2005.