A celebration of Human Rights Day 2016 was organised by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), Ciné-ONU and the European Union at Bozar, Brussels’ Centre for Fine Arts.
This year’s theme, Stand Up for Someone's Rights Today, was demonstrated by the performers and the audience who came to support them.
All were welcomed by Paul Dujardin, CEO and Artistic Director of Bozar, while acknowledging Bozar’s proud tradition of collaborating with the UN for Human Rights Day. Sarah Rinaldi of EuropeAid and Caroline Petit, Deputy Director of UNRIC, introduced the event, Ms Petit emphasised that “uncertainty and ignorance bring potential fears that can only be overcome by getting to know each other and by working together”. Paul D’Auchamp, OHCHR Regional Representative for Europe, made a substantial call to stand up and break the wave of political intolerance.
A quirky start was made with a presentation by Duo for a Job, a mentor and mentee describing the mutual benefits of the intergenerational project that connects retired experienced professionals with young immigrants seeking employment. The student initiative Dare To Be Grey then outlined their campaign against the polarisation of society, promoting diversity and nuanced debate. Members of the audience stood up to express gratitude for work being done for others’ rights, and expressed their concerns for rights yet to be addressed.
The Qotob Project, a trio whose intricate piano, cello and accordion performance almost wore out their instruments, were the first to bring music to the stage. Refugees Got Talent gave the finale, a comprehensive celebration of artistic talent featuring simultaneous painting and music.
The Human Rights Day festivities concluded with a lively reception.
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