Youth Poetry Festival for Human Rights Day 2010

Harare – The Youth Poetry Festival organized by UNIC Harare in partnership with the Zimbabwe United Nations Association (ZUNA) to commemorate Human Rights Day was held on 30 November 2010.  The Festival was held before December 10 to enable the participation and audience of high school children who were due to close schools on December 2 for the Christmas break.

Pupils from Glen View High recite a poem on human rights during the Youth Poetry Festival held in Harare in commemoration of Human Rights Day 2010.

The Youth Poetry Festival involved pupils from schools that are members of the Zimbabwe United Nations Association (ZUNA) reciting and performing poems on human rights, guided by the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948. Jonathan Mavhunga of Glen View High 1 also beat the drum for human rights.

Six schools participated in the event. These are Kumbuzuma High 1 Secondary School, Ellis Robins Boys High School, Glen View High 1 School, Glen View High School 2, Mablereign Girls High School and Dzivarasekwa High School.

Speaking at the occasion, UNIC National Information Officer Tafadzwa (Mumba) Mwale highlighted some of the rights that are in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights such as the right to life, liberty and security of person, the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law, the right to own property and others.

The Guest of Honour at this event was Mr Ndinde from the National Arts Council who spoke on the topic: “Poetry as a form of Expression.” In his speech, Mr Ndinde commended the organizers for using art (poetry) to convey the message of human rights. He said that “poetry gives an opportunity for individuals to express their innermost feelings. It (poetry) cuts across divisional and other barriers and is an effective tool of communicating messages on human rights,” he said.

Mr Ndinde said the beating of the drum was significant especially as drums have traditionally been used to send messages. They are one of the oldest means of communicating about outbreak of war, peace or even to just raise an alert.