29. December 2020 – ADVOCACY


Düzen Tekkal has shown her movie “HÁWAR” many times and is well aware of the effect on adults: whoever sees it is affected and wants to help. But how would 14- to 16-year-old students react? Overwhelmed? Defensive? Would they understand the message of the film? She asked herself these questions in the run-up to a school project at the Martin-Buber-Oberschule in Berlin Spandau, during which she showed the film “HÁWAR” and discussed it with the students.

“Everyone listened very carefully” she is pleased in retrospect about the interest shown. “Unbelievable how well prepared they were and what thoughtful questions they came up with.” A dialogue entirely in the spirit of the great religious philosopher Martin Buber, after whom the school is named, and who has repeatedly dealt with the dialogue between people, but also the dialogue of people with God, in his works.

The students were not only informed about the current suffering of the Yazidis through the film and the dialogue with Düzen Tekkal. They also learned a lot about this people from northern Iraq, from which Düzen Tekkal descends. For example, about their religion, which contains Gnostic, Christian and Islamic elements. About their peaceful life in the north of Iraq, which was abruptly destroyed by the attackers of the so-called “Islamic State”. And about the people Düzen Tekkal and the association “HÁWAR” aims to help.

The film generated a lot of consternation among the students. “I will try to help as much as possible and get involved,” wrote one student after the event. Another, “I just can’t fathom people being persecuted and killed because of their religion.” And one student asked the important question, “Is Germany helping the Yazidis enough, or could more be done?” It is a question that Düzen Tekkal and the members of “HÁWAR” also keep asking politicians and other responsible people. And if the honest answer is “we could do more”, the organization establishes contacts with helping organizations and people and makes sure that good intentions turn into real help.