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11th TDF: “IMAGINE YOUR FUTURE” PROGRAM (3/21/2009)

“IMAGINE YOUR FUTURE” PROGRAM

Digital films created by young people coming from disadvantaged social groups were presented in the section “Imagine Your Future”, Saturday, March 21, at the John Cassavetes theater.

The Imagine your Future program is the result of the collaboration between the 11th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival - Images of the 21st Century with the British Council and is a part of the Council’s international program, called “Living Together”. This program gives the opportunity to young people who live in social isolation to speak, through small digital stories, about themselves, their dreams, their goals, their futures.

Living Together, takes place in Britain and in 8 other South Eastern European countries: Greece, Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Israel, the FYROM and Slovenia. In Greece, “Imagine Your Future” was done in collaboration with the NGO “Arsis” and with the Journalism and Media Department of the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki.

Grigoris Paschalidis, sociologist and assistant professor at the Journalism and Media Department of the AUT introduced the films. He stressed: “2 minute long digital stories are included in this pioneering program, made by young people, using images and drawings as the means with which to speak about their lives. Three different teams participated in the process: Young inmates from the Diavata Juridical Prison, immigrants housed at a shelter in Thessaloniki and foreign students of the Aristotelian University. All of them are first or second generation immigrants”.

Closing the presentation, Mr. Paschalidis spoke about the program’s aims: “The British Council’s program is centered on minorities and immigrant groups made up of young people. Their ultimate goal is to give these groups their own voice, that is, to give them the opportunity to shape and present their stories. In this way, we can develop an indirect but extremely moving dialogue with these people, who, though we may not see them, hear them or come into daily contact with them, nevertheless live among us”.


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