For over 40 years we’ve worked with communities who have been affected by conflict and violence. If those experiences have taught us anything, it’s that long-term solutions to crises can only be found by addressing the underlying causes.
Today, unprecedented changes in the climate are making life increasingly difficult for people living in some of the world’s most fragile countries. As natural resources dwindle, communities that once cooperated are being forced to compete, leading to tensions, mistrust and often violence.
For September - and around the International Day of Peace - we’re running a series of events in Edinburgh, London and Glasgow, focusing on what can be done to build a more peaceful world. We'd love to see you there!
Talking Peace Festival 2019
Saturday 21st September
Flat Iron Square, Southwark, London
To mark Peace Day 2019 we're teaming up with other organisations to champion the possibilities of peace, and engage with the most urgent issues of peace and conflict around the world.
Our events include a performace by the nine-piece Congolese dance band Zong Zing Allstars, a photography exhibition centred on the art of the Sudanese Revolution, and a Virtual Reality experience from Jordan where more than 700,000 Syrian refugees live.
Other festival highlights include film screenings, spoken word performances from women in the Colombian diaspora, a Filipino feast, a discussion on peacebuilding with Yemeni activists, and inspiring art and dance workshops.
Join us for a vibrant and exciting day full of music, provocation and fun, celebrating peacebuilding in all its forms. Most events are free, but some require you to book.
See the full line-up of events at Talking Peace Festival 2019 here.
Take One Action Film Festival 2019
Various venues, Edinburgh & Glasgow
Mercy Corps is collaborating with the Take One Action Film Festival 2019 to screen a series of powerful and poignant films which trace individual narratives of strength and resilience in fragile situations. The films recognise the importance of individual stories, as well as statistics, in enabling us to comprehend humanitarian crisis.
Based in Edinburgh and Glasgow, this twelve-day festival will bring together communities and campaigners, artists and politicians. The festival aims to open up conversations about peacebuilding, to engage audiences in discussion beyond borders, to inspire belief in the possibility of a more sustainable and equal world, and in doing so, to catalyse tangible action for lasting change.
Mercy Corps will be screening three films. Tiny Souls and Anbessa both follow imaginative and resourceful children growing up in harsh environments, while Facing the Dragon profiles two Afghan women working to shape the future of their country from within. After each screening, audiences are invited to discuss the film and engage in thoughtful, lively conversations about the world today. See below for more details of each film, and how you can get tickets.
Sunday 22nd September, 5:45pm | Filmhouse, Edinburgh | Get tickets
Monday 23rd September, 7:30pm | CCA, Glasgow | Get tickets
9-year-old Marwa is a lively, inquisitive child. She and her family live in Jordan’s Za’atari camp, the world’s largest camp for Syrian refugees, and hope to return home soon. Tiny Souls documents Marwa’s daily life as she blossoms from a cheeky child to a teenager. With her access to the camp often restricted, director Dina Naser provided cameras for Marwa and her siblings to film themselves, affording her protagonists a remarkable sense of agency in an environment otherwise cruelly lacking in autonomy. Her quietly devastating documentary, exclusively shot from the children’s perspectives, raises crucial questions as to what lies in store for their whole generation.
Beyond The Screen: Join us for a post-film conversation with Dina Naser, director of Tiny Souls, and Hala Abu Tayeh, Programme Manager for Mercy Corps in Jordan.
Wednesday 25th September, 5:45pm | Glasgow Film Theatre, Glasgow | Get tickets
Thursday 26th September, 5.50pm | Filmhouse, Edinburgh | Get tickets
On the outskirts of Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, the largest modern housing development in East Africa promises thousands of people a better way of life. Its construction, on the farmland 10-year-old Asalif and his mother called home, has left them with just a tool shed, with no electricity or running water. With dream-like poetry and stunning cinematography, Anbessa brings Asalif’s inner world of childhood adventures to life, while shedding light on the stark reality of internal displacement for those left behind by urbanisation.
Beyond The Screen: Join Amy Fairbairn, Head of Media & Communications for Mercy Corps, and others to explore questions of development, sustainability and how to ensure opportunities can be shared more equitably.
Facing The Dragon
Friday 27th September, 8.30pm | Filmhouse, Edinburgh | Get tickets
As American forces and aid leave Afghanistan, Afghan-American filmmaker Sedika Mojadidi crafts an intimate portrait of two awe-inspiring women: Nilofar, a member of parliament, and Shakila, a television journalist. With recent gains for women and the country’s fragile democracy hanging in the balance after decades of international and internal conflict, Facing the Dragon pays tribute to its protagonists’ determination to change their country from within; casting light on the energy women the world over are pouring into addressing power imbalance.
Beyond The Screen: Join us after the film to explore the space being carved for women’s voices, especially in the political and media arenas, and how life continues in these fragile contexts. Speakers include Jon Novakovic, Senior Programme Officer for Mercy Corps, and representatives from Engender and Christian Aid.
The Future of NGOs: Have Your Say
Saturday 28th September
Quaker Meeting House, Edinburgh
The world is developing at a rapid pace and not everyone is benefiting. Global hunger has increased for the third year in a row, +70 million people are displaced, and climate change is making already-vulnerable communities even more so.
In a world of turmoil, how must development organisations evolve? What role should they play in disrupting the system, and how do you, the changemaker, get involved? Join us on the closing weekend of the Take One Action Film Festival for a forward-looking discussion – and have your say.
This event is free but ticketed - get yours here.