Art competition spotlights suffering of displaced children

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 21 September 2004, 08:11 GMT]
Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) held an art competition among the displaced children living in welfare centres in the Northeast Province and in Puttalam district to highlight the difficulties war affected children face. The winning drawings will be exhibited in the island level exhibition in Colombo,

Art competition.
Children taking part in art competition in Jaffna.
"More than 350 000 children are still living in welfare centres due to land mines or the prevailing insecurity in the area, an official of the HRCSL said.

The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HCRSL) with the support of UNHCR conducted the Art Exhibition on the topic 'Pulse of the Displaced Children' to mark the World Children Day, which falls on 1 October, at J.R.Jayawardene Cultural Centre in Colombo.

Jaffna district level art competition was held Monday in several centres. Hundreds of IDP children including Muslims participated in the competition. Trincomalee HCRSL regional office conducted this competition in Trincomalee Town hall Sunday. About hundred displaced children from all three communities participated in the competition.

Displaced children participating in the Art Exhibition are divided into two groups, Group One 10-13 and Group Two 14-18.

Ten best drawings and winners from each district would be taken to Colombo to attend the Art Exhibition on the World Children day, the organizers said.

The organizers said the objective of the art exhibition is to bring out the suffering and their desire for a bright future of the internally displaced children languishing in welfare centres and refugee camps for several years, through their drawings.

Art competition.
Children taking part in art competition in Trinco.
Art competition.
Muslim displaced girls participating in Trinco competition.

Art competition.
A displaced child from Upparu village in Kinniya division taking part in the competition.
Art competition.
UNHCR Associate Field Officer in Trincomalee Ms.Sara Lindvall handing over a gift to a Muslim displaced girl who participated in art exhibition held in Trinco Sunday.

The vision of the competition is to display the skills of displaced children and also to make the people aware of the plight of these children, said the official of the Human Rights Commission.

"Drawing has been selected as a medium to have a dialogue with those unfortunate children. Hence we conduct these regional art competitions among displaced children," he said.

"Displacement is the bitterest of their childhood memories. Most the children are born in the welfare centres and from birth they are carrying the tag of 'Internally Displaced'. Children seek no sympathy but only love and security," he added.

Art competition.
Children taking part in art competition in Jaffna.


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