Islamabad - Seven-day traditional doll-making workshop kicked off yesterday, involving young craft persons to learn this art directly from masters in the field at National Institute of Folk and Traditional Heritage, Lok Virsa.

As many as 45 students from various educational institutions of twin cities participated in the workshop while five traditional female doll-makers from different parts of the country, would impart the training and share their master-skills through demonstration of their artisanship. The participants will learn to make ethnic dolls, dressed up in the traditional costumes to highlight Pakistan’s folk culture and its living traditions, practiced by a dominant majority of its people.

The workshop is part of Lok Virsa’s on-going series `Craft of the Month’ organized by Lok Virsa in collaboration with Federal Directorate of Education and Directorate General for Special Education.

Barrister Usman Ibrahim, Minister of State for Capital Administration and Development Division (CAAD) inaugurated the workshop and appreciated the contribution of Lok Virsa in creating a linkage between culture and education.

He said “Children are our future and we must prepare them for a better Pakistan. The way Lok Virsa is creating awareness among them is praiseworthy.” The minister assured full cooperation on the part of his ministry for the successful holding of the on-going series of the programme by Lok Virsa.

Renowned puppeteer and member of Lok Virsa Board of Governors, Farooq Qaiser informed that the major objective of Lok Virsa is the promotion of Pakistani culture and its transfer to the next generations.

The ongoing craft of the month series aims at promoting traditional skills, giving knowledge to younger generation about the importance and utility of different crafts and providing opportunity to youth to learn about Pakistan’s rich, diverse and pluralistic cultural tapestry.

It also encourages youth to value dignity of labour, foster ownership for their culture, create respect for different professions and character building. It helps understand the contribution of artisans in the sustainable development of their community and country at large, he added.

The Heritage Museum highlights one craft for a week every month and have artisans and experts available for children to engage and learn from them. These craft-persons not only display their crafts but also make them in front of the people. This will give a hand on opportunity to become familiar with the folk crafts.

“This is an experiment of sowing the seeds of pluralistic society in our younger generation. A generation that, we hope, will take care of our country in future and make it into a truly pluralistic society where people of all cultures, languages and traditions living in Pakistan will fully own each other as valued Pakistani citizens,” he added.