Pattan’s arts and culture desk, Pattan Lok Natak, engages women and men of all backgrounds without any discrimination on social, economic and political issues through the media of street theatre/skit performance, story telling, poetry recitation, puppetry, folk music and dance etc. Such performances encompass a wide range of topics, such as violence against women and women’s rights, HIV/AIDS, exploitation of the poor and women, extremism, governance/democracy and election issues, in collaboration with other awareness projects undertaken by Pattan and other civil society organizations. These traditional forms of artistic creativity helps Pattan tap into the sub-continent’s rich cultural history and connects with people on a universal level, promoting ideas of change and resistance to injustices, discrimination, and violations of human rights. This has the combined positive effects of promoting both the value of local culture and the importance of social awareness.
Pattan Lok Natak has organised many theatre festivals and hundreds of impromptu street performances all across the country, in rural and urban areas, capturing the imagination and spirit of thousands of people. It has taken its message abroad as well, participating in the World Social Forum events. Street theatre is incorporated into many of the events and activities. In all local government and general elections held between 2000 and 2008, 007, Pattan Lok Natak mobilized and motivated young voters and women all over Pakistan. In 2007, it launched an ambitious theatre-training programme with women councilors. The trained women will organize theatre performances at community level with womenfolk in order to enhance their awareness on their issues.