Mrs. Paloma Fierro, History teacher of our school Assumption of Las Águilas (Mexico), within the framework of her course, proposed to the students in the 5th semester of CCH (corresponding to the 1st semester of the last year of the school) to participate in the PLURAL + Festival organized by the UNAOC (Alliance of Civilizations of the United Nations) and the IOM (migrations of the United Nations).
This Festival is offered to young people from all over the world to encourage them to explore and deepen the social problems of today’s world, often characterized by intolerance and cultural divisions. “The PLURAL + Youth Video Festival recognizes young people as powerful agents of social change and enables them to share their creative vision with the world and foster respect for diversity.” (https://pluralplus.unaoc.org/)
Each year, young people are therefore invited to express their views on these issues creatively in short films. The films must be original and creative (animation, documentary, video, comedy, etc.) with a message to make the audience think constructively about migration, diversity, social inclusion and the prevention of xenophobia.
“The winning videos are chosen on the basis of their potential to have an impact on the public, as well as their artistic, innovative and creative content. PLURAL + award winners are invited to New York to participate in the annual PLURAL + Awards ceremony and a series of side events offering professional development and co-production opportunities.” (https://pluralplus.unaoc.org/)
The pupils, therefore, made videos in which they talked about social inclusion, xenophobia, migration, among other topics. An internal competition was held to select the 3 best videos from each class, which were then entered in the Festival.Out of the 1160 videos recorded around the world, two of our teams were recognized on November 13 at the United Nations premises in New York:
1- In the 13-17 years old category: the video “TAGS, Let’s make the difference with our differences”” from our students Mateo Díaz, Montserrat Sánchez B, Santiago Velasco, Maricarmen López C, Isabel Conconi and Edgar García V.Synopsis: Foreigners are confronted with the limitations of labels and realize that reality does not always meet their expectations and preconceived ideas. https://pluralplus.unaoc.org/13-17-age-category/tags/
2- Special prize: for the video “Would You Say It Face to Face?” by Santiago Casares, Andrés Sánchez Polo, Eugenia Bringas and Constanza Vargas.Synopsis: This short film raises awareness of the repercussions of hurtful words, especially on social media. https://pluralplus.unaoc.org/2019-winners/would-you-say-it-face-to-face/
During the awarding ceremony a strong message was given by Santiago Casares “...We need to stick together, to be stronger” :https://twitter.com/IOMatUN/status/1194659455062990850?s=20
Let’s celebrate! because if it is an achievement and a credit to these young people for their teamwork, it is also the result of all the efforts and accompaniment throughout their schooling since their childhood within our educational Community (Yes, Community: parents, teachers, directors, religious, coordinators, administrative staff and mayor).
It is a real recognition for these young people who are committed to their reality, seeking solutions and alternatives in the face of current problems, based on their capacity for reflection, analysis, creativity, teamwork, solidarity, empathy and service. They were able to present their work with confidence and assurance, speaking extraordinary English. They represented not only their country, their generation but also their school in this international festival. They accepted the responsibility they have today, facing the challenges that the world presents to us.
But it is also a recognition of the work, dedication, effort, perseverance, love, motivation, preparation and dynamism of each of those who have touched the lives of these young people in one way or another.Let’s celebrate! for it is the fruits that are beginning to be harvested, after having taken care of the seeds sown with that characteristic stamp that is ours: “BE ASSUMPTION”.
May this experience make us proud of what we do, who we are and what we are capable of achieving and offering to our society. May it serve as a motivation for our daily efforts. May it make us understand that there are many reasons to celebrate. May it allow us to recognize that we are on the right path, that it is worthwhile and that, as St. Marie Eugenie says, “None of our efforts should be the last”. May it be an example to celebrate the goals we achieve every day, no matter how small, and may it be a motivation to continue to give the best of ourselves.
Sister Isabelle Eugenie GORGEUSecretariat of Education