LAHORE: ‘Heroes for a day’ campaign, spearheaded by mixed martial artist and film-maker Sara Tareen in collaboration with Inside Out, aims to inspire and transform lives of Shaheen Academy’s underprivileged youth via the power of art. Inside Out is a large-scale participatory art project that transforms messages of personal identity into pieces of art work and provides people with an opportunity to share their portraits and make a statement about themselves.The France-based project has received global recognition, and its arrival in Pakistan – especially at Shaheen Academy, which aims to provide the youth from slums a chance at life – is of immense significance. Portraits of young MMA practitioners on walls of the Shaheen AcademySpeaking about the ‘heroes for a day’ campaign, Sara Tareen said: “I have been following these children closely through my work and saw their resilience, Even though life is hard on them, yet they have their own micro society.”The MMA fighter and film-maker added that through this project, she aims to create awareness and give voice to those who are living in poverty with limited opportunities. She said the idea of the campaign is to paint portraits of young martial artists so the community could see them as heroes of their own destinies.A couple of portraits from the ‘heroes for a day’ campaignShaheen Academy is an initiative of MMA godfather Bashir Ahmed, who through his decade old efforts, has made MMA one of the fastest growing sports in the country. Talking about Shaheen, Bashir said: “This is where we hope to inspire and motivate kids and teens to be the best version of themselves as role models and leaders, hoping to use the power of martial arts to change the lives of the poor and disadvantaged kids of Charrar Pind. Some come from poor but stable homes, and too many others have lives more like a stray animal than someone’s child.”Bashir also successfully runs Synergy MMA and arguably has been the most influential personality in promotion of MMA in Pakistan, and also in providing aspiring fighter with the necessary tools to make it big globally. Pakistan’s MMA industry is soaring at great heights with prospects like Ahmed Mujtaba, Mehmosh Raza, Shahid Siddique, Haider Farman and several others competing at renowned fight promotions including ONE Championship in Asia and Brave CF in the Middle East among several others.