The third edition of the EUROLIBERIAN Film Festival, organized by the EU Delegation in Liberia in collaboration with the Liberian Government, has concluded at the Monrovia City Hall.
The festival which took place during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence was under the theme, “Stop the Violence, Make the Change”. This year's festival focused on promoting gender equality and raising awareness on gender-based violence. It also highlighted the importance of culture as a powerful tool to build bridges between people, communities and countries.
Head of the European Union Delegation to Liberia, Hélène Cavé said, "The EU is strongly committed to supporting gender equality and cultural heritage, creativity and the creative industries. Culture, cultural diversity and cultural heritage are important to us as they contribute to wellbeing, social cohesion and intercultural dialogue, but also to economic growth. As you probably experienced in the Film Festival, images are a powerful tool to learn about gender equality, human rights and culture".
Over 400 people gathered to witness the closing ceremony and last screening of European and Liberian movies. During the16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, the EUROLIBERIAN Film Festival screened 15 short documentaries on gender issues in local communities made by Liberian women filmmakers.
As a contribution to the preservation of Liberia's cultural heritage, the Film Festival also featured the popular TV comedy hit series Malawala Balawala, broadcasted before the civil war, in the 80s. Most Malawala Balawala tapes were severely damaged during the civil war; however, with the support of the Liberian Broadcasting System, some contents were refurbished and showcased at the festival.
Before the official opening of the festival, a side event including two-day masterclasses on video production and storytelling was also organised at the University of Liberia.
The EUROLIBERIAN Film Festival started on 27 November and end on 9 December. It was a partnership with Kriterion Monrovia and Accountability Lab (two dynamic Liberian civil society organizations), and also a collaboration with the Embassies of Ireland and Sweden in Monrovia. The festival is took place at several locations, including cinemas, schools and town halls, reaching out to a wide and diverse audience, especially young people.