Hear me, I am Shouting out Loud
The walls are filled with tableaus behind which a world of voice is waiting. And my eyes are all of a sudden fixed on a paining which houses white dandelions and is expected to voice the sound of the hands that have created patterns on the canvas to remote destinations. Some distance farther, a young girl wearing big dark eyeglasses with her slim fingers is beating and singing: “I won’t become a kid again…”
She spreads her words with the colors she has put on the canvas with obsession, and she puts all the things that are floating in her mind and cannot be expressed in words in a row together and she wants to be seen. Let’s not make her fear the world; let’s hear her colors…
A few days ago on Fereshteh Street, children who the world speaks to them in a different language, talked to us in the language of color and music and hung their voices on the walls of the exhibition. The DMN Company held the painting exhibition “Look at Me” of the series of social activities sponsored by Samsung.
Farshad Mahmoudi, in charge of holding the “Look at Me” campaign which has been highly covered in the social networks and among the people, commenting on the details of the campaign says: “The campaign is in line with the Children of Hope campaign of Samsung which was held in Iran.”
Before dealing with this campaign, it is necessary to explain activities of Samsung in Iran. The Children of Hope campaign is a turning point in the policies of social responsibility of this brand which has been held in Iran since 2011.
The DMN Company was put in charge of implementing the project last year. The Children of Hope is held in three education, health and environment sections. In the education section Samsung has offered solutions in Iran in three areas; establishment of audio libraries for blind children and encouraging people to record their own voice and produce audio books for these libraries; the Class of Tomorrow project and establishment of smart classes in south of Tehran, Establishment of an engineering academy with the cooperation of the state Technical and Vocational Organization and training of the technicians free of charge. These have been the activities of this brand during these years.
In the field of health, the activities of Samsung have been more scattered, such as taking care of the treatment cost of some children suffering from cardiac diseases and tasks of this kind.
“Autism is one of the areas in which Samsung is active both in Iran and globally. This exhibition is the first activity of this brand in the field of autism in Iran which has been held with the cooperation of DMN Company.”
Elaborating on autism disorder, he commented on the targets and the communicative form of the campaign: “Autism is not a disease but some type of disorder that is caused at young age and if attention is paid to it in the early years its spread can be prevented through some rehabilitation activities and the child can return to the society. The child with autism is unable to communicate with the society in the form which is common, and events in his mind take place in a different way. For this reason, in the poster of the painting exhibition “Look at Me”, we show the mind of a person in scattered pieces and these puzzles have not the ordinary consistency like normal people.
“At the start of the project, Samsung introduced “Ravanpajohan-e Mofid Institute” to us. This Institute in a plan called “Homa” and with the help of a painting master embarked on the fostering the painting skills of children suffering from autism.
“Samsung, through its support for and investment in the project, decided to produce about 80 works by these children in the course of six months and at the end hold an exhibition of the paintings.
In this campaign we reached the conclusion that instead of resorting to the media, it would be better to use the power of the NGOs, celebrities and the role of the people. In fact, through activating small associations in this regard we tried to automatically increase vigilance in the society and thereby make a big volume of information dissemination, We believe that the social responsibility projects need presence of the people and mouth to mouth promotion in order to become successful.
To this end, we sought help from small NGOs active in this field. Even we tried to somehow support them in this campaign; for example we ordered some of the gifts of the event to a group of active mothers who were related to the field of our activities.
“As for the Timeline of the Exhibition, the campaign “Look at Me” was held in the Ariana Gallery on February 16-18. The Ariana Gallery is one of the best galleries in Iran which held the exhibition free of charge. The first day of the exhibition was marked by a news conference and news agencies covered the event. The second day Yashar Khodaei, the art expert in art therapy held a panel in the exhibition on the role of music therapy in autism disorder and on the last day his students who were among those affected with autism performed a piece of music.”
He pointed to the main lines of the campaign as: “The name of the campaign was inspired by the special application of Samsung for autism disorder called Look at Me.
Besides the measures taken to activate the small associations and societies, we did a lot of information dissemination in cafes, theater plateaus, and schools for children affected by autism. The Autism Society of Iran unofficially supported this movement. Those involved in the campaign “Be My Voice” rendered great help in the dissemination of information in this event. The celebrities and a large number of people shared the posters of the exhibition in the social networks. We managed to disseminate information in a society of 300,000 people with less than two million tomans. In other words, this campaign is a good example of public and mouth to mouth advertising and a confirmation of people accompanying popular movements of the type of social responsibility.
“The main purpose was to convey the voice of these children to all and say that with little attention to the children suffering from autism they can see their skills and capabilities and can be seen. We hope to have come closer to this goal to a great extent.”
Marjan Vosouqi, Director of Supportive Services of Autism Society of Iran is pleased with the holding of the event and says: The Iranian Society of Autism due to the tight working schedule cannot directly attend the event but we tried to extensively disseminate information to the families and relevant centers. This event was a blessed event that could take the children suffering from autism out of isolation and show them to be seen properly. The exhibition was held with high quality and in line with respect for human dignity and its results was rendering help to measuring skills and identifying capabilities of the children who have innovative and dynamic mind. The quality of the work of the children shows that a little time, financial support and planning can have a great effect on the life of the children suffering from autism.