Commemorating the ‘World AIDS Day’, Durex with its youth and adolescent-focused initiative – The Birds and Bees Talk (TBBT) program is assisting the 23rd edition of Nagaland’s iconic Hornbill Festival at Naga Heritage Village Kisama.
The ten-days-long ‘Festival of Festivals’ attained special focus as India is planning to showcase Hornbill Festival to G-20 in adherence to PM Modi’s recommendation to not limit G-20 to urban cities and display India’s rich heritage and culture.
Durex The Birds and the Bees Talk with the Department of Tourism, Nagaland will be celebrating the rich culture, art and music of the tribes in the beautiful Kisama Heritage village during the 23rd edition of the iconic Hornbill Festival 2022 as its ‘Health Partner’.
The Vice-President of India – Jagdeep Dhankar inaugurated the ceremony on December 1, in the presence of Nagaland Governor – Prof. Jagdish Mukhi, Chief Minister of Nagaland – Neiphiu Rio, Festival Host & Advisor of Tourism, Art & Culture – H. Khehovi Yeputhomi.
Other guests include – Ambassador of France to India – Emmaneul Lenain, His Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for South Asia and British Deputy High Commissioner for Western India – Alan Gemmell and the Australian High Commissioner to India – Barry O’ Farrell Ao.
Meanwhile, the Chief Guest of the festival – Mr. Ravi Bhatnagar, Director of External Affairs and Partnerships in SOA, Reckitt addressed the keynote speaker session. He shared “Nagaland has pioneered its approach in addressing discrimination and erasing the stigma that marginalized people suffer. The support of the people of Nagaland to The Birds and the Bees Talk initiative focusing on inclusion, equity, awareness, consent, and protection indicates a deep understanding of sexual diversity and acceptance.”
The session was hosted by the Advisor of Information and Technology (IT), Science and Technology, New & Renewable Energy – Mmhonlumo Kikon.
TBBT is taking the opportunity to reach out to the youth and adolescents to spread awareness and information towards important issues of growing up through innovative Gaming and Virtual Reality experience during the festival.
The exhibition situated in bamboo pavilion was inaugurated by Thavaseelan K (IAS), Principal Director, School Education, Project Director, NECTOR & CEO, State Health Authority, Government of Nagaland.
Students from GHSS Jotsoma were the special guests of the exhibit and they experienced beauty of Nagaland from a bird’s eye view through virtual reality.
The Birds and Bees Talk focuses on the principles of Protection, Awareness, Consent, Inclusion and Equity, which are incorporated in the game through a completely “new avatar”. The festival is also supported by Assocham Foundation.
Citing Northeast India as a strategically important region for them to make a significant difference to the health of the nation, the Senior Vice President of South Asia in Reckitt – Gaurav Jain, said, “Reckitt aims to protect, heal and nurture in the relentless pursuit of creating a cleaner and healthier world. Reckitt’s Economic and Social Impact initiatives contribute to 13 of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals to help people in India lead healthier and more hygienic lives. Our collaboration with the prestigious Hornbill Festival is our way of ensuring that our vision of One Health, One Planet, One Future is taken forward by the young adults and youth in the Northeast.”
Attaching the TBBT association with the larger goal of having informed and responsible youth, the Minister of Higher Education and Tribal Affairs in Nagaland – Temjen Imna Along shared, “The Land of festivals Nagaland is proud to host the 23rd edition of Hornbill Festival and with The Birds And Bees Talk being a health partner for the festival, together we stand strong for the youth of Nagaland by making their future healthier and happier.”
“TBBT program in Nagaland focuses and provides training and awareness to adolescents on critical life-changing skills. The program always introduces innovative and fun ways to connect with the youth and community as well. Partnering Hornbill as the purpose health partner is a great way to spread the right knowledge and information,” said Thavaseelan K (IAS), Principal Director, School Education, Project Director, NECTOR & CEO, State Health Authority, Government of Nagaland.
“Hornbill signifies the unity in diversity and a way to bring people together from all over. TBBT talks about core values like consent, equity, protection, inclusion and awareness among adolescents. And this year TBBT being a part of the grand festival as a purpose partner is a needed intervention,” said Keduosieu Metha, Director, Department of Tourism, Nagaland.
“I would like to extend my thank and gratitude to the Department of Tourism, Nagaland for providing full support in making the program grow exponentially. The continuous inputs from the system welcomed and boosted our efforts and gave us a nudge to perform better and affect millions of lives of youth for their overall development,” said Asif Mohammed, Executive Director, Plan India.
The festival of festivals will host guests from across states and nation representing rich culture of various tribes of Nagaland and with TBBT as Health Partner, the partnership will reach out the youths and people of Nagaland ensuring that the youth and future of India becomes healthier and happier.