De Ontmoeting, meaning ‘meeting’ in Dutch, has proved to be a busy, vibrant community hub at the 49th Union Conference on Lung Health, inspiring discussions through presentations, movies and cultural activities.
The week has seen panel discussions, skill building workshops, networking and participating sessions where community activists, scientists, students, and civil society have come together to discuss solutions and inspire action towards our common goals of improving lung health globally.
The De Ontmoeting has hosted 41 sessions by the end of Friday with over 60 people attending session ‘UNHLM: What’s Next?’ and several former-TB patients joining the session ‘TB, the Dutch Story’.
In the De Ontmoeting exhibition the eight booths have offered various activities from Wheel of Fortune games to smoothies. Delegates who visited the Union booth were invited to leave comments and assert their human rights to demand treatment and prevention of TB. People have left messages to help turn promises into action saying, “Health is a right not a privilege! End TB now!”, “Let’s make the UN HLM on TB worth it” and “TB is ending soon”.
Thursday saw the installation of an interactive sound exhibition led by the TB Alliance. The global initiative, Louder than TB, set up a sound exhibition where delegates could add their voice and make noise to change the sound of TB.
The Movie Box has hosted nine films. Last night it featured a short film – ‘Breathless’ (Ademloos in Dutch). The screening encouraged participants to explore the issues surrounding air pollution, and its effect on communities as filmmaker Daniel Lambo sets out to find the truth about the deadly asbestos industry.
Artist, Elena Ploetz, has been asking delegates the question, “What first comes to mind when you hear the word “tuberculosis”? Elena then visualized people´s unique responses and spontaneously drew their answers. The pieces of art will be used as visual aids to address the issues of stigma and people’s misconceptions about TB.