Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy – WOMAN of ACTION™

A-Celebration-of-Women-Feature-Banner-e1352628808407 (1) 512


A Celebration of Women

is elated to Celebrate the Life of this woman leader, film maker for social justice for all women, with a focus on the suffering of Muslim Women in Pakistan.





Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy

She’s the founder of the Citizens Archive of Pakistan, dedicated to preserving Pakistan’s history.


Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy (Urdu:شرمین عبید چنائے; born 1978), is a Pakistani journalist and documentary filmmaker.
She won an Academy Award for her documentary, Saving Face in 2012.

Sharmeen Saving-Face_Image_4-830x553Every year in Pakistan, many people are victimized by brutal acid attacks.

The majority of these are women, and many MORE cases go unreported.

With little or no access to reconstructive surgery, survivors are physically and emotionally scarred, while many reported assailants – typically a husband or someone close to the victim – are let go with minimal punishment from the state.

SAVING FACE tells the stories of two acid-attack survivors: Zakia and Rukhsana, their arduous attempts to bring their assailants to justice, and the charitable work of London-based, Pakistani-born plastic surgeon Dr. Mohammad Jawad, who strives to help these women put this horrific act behind them and move on with their lives. Directed by Oscar® and Emmy®-nominated filmmaker Daniel Junge and Emmy®-winning Pakistani director Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, SAVING FACE is an intimate look inside Pakistani society, illuminating each women’s personal journey while showing how reformers are tackling this vexing problem.

sharmeen talibanShe won an Emmy for her documentary, Pakistan: Children of the Taliban in 2010.

She is also the first non-American to win the Livingston Award for Young Journalists.

She has been lauded as Pakistan’s first Oscar winner by the press and government.

The Pakistani President conferred the Hilal-e-Imtiaz on Obaid-Chinoy on 23 March 2012, for bringing honor to Pakistan as a filmmaker.

Time magazine has named Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy within their annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world for 2012.

Sharmeen was ranked 37th on’s list of the 50 Coolest Desis of 2009.

Academy Award and Emmy Award winning documentary filmmaker.

sharmeen transgendersHer films include SAVING FACE, TRANSGENDERS: PAKISTAN’S OPEN SECRET AND PAKISTAN’S TALIBAN GENERATION, which aired on PBS, Channel 4, CBC, SBS and Arte and was the recipient of the Alfred I Dupont Award as well as The Association for International Broadcasting award.

Sharmeen has made over a dozen-multi award winning films in over 10 countries around the world and is the first non-American to be awarded the Livingston Award for best international reporting.

Obaid-Chinoy began writing investigative pieces at the age of fourteen as a way to contribute to critical conversation in Pakistan. She was always interested in telling stories of marginalized communities; people whose voices were never heard and whose compelling stories needed to be shared. She continued to pursue journalism while she was at Smith and wrote for a number of Canadian and American publications.

From a Muslim girl growing up in Pakistan to an Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy has shaken the world with the stories she has uncovered, including her country’s problem with acid attacks against women. Hear Sharmeen reveal what goes on behind the scenes of her investigative reporting as she shares her hopes for young Muslim women.

In December 2001, Obaid-Chinoy returned to Pakistan and spent time in refugee camps and went back to the US with a documentary proposal in hand. At the age of twenty two, with no prior experience, she sent letters to eighty news companies and organizations in the US, and was declined by all of them.

Eventually, Bill Abrams, the president of New York Times Television gave her her big break.

sharmeen terrorschildren-lg-300x197She returned to Pakistan to produce Terror’s Children.

Terror’s Children is a personal journey of a Pakistani filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid.

For ten weeks in the summer of 2002, she followed the lives of eight Afghan refugee children in the city of Karachi, who had been forced to flee their war ravaged homes in Afghanistan, often alone, to face hunger, disease, illiteracy, servitude and even forced militancy. While many of these children live in the Afghan refugee camp, some also live in illegal encroachments near garbage dumps and become scavengers who sell paper and bottles that they have collected by sifting through trash, others find refuge in religious schools (called “madrasas”) that provide free food, shelter and clothing to young boys in exchange for their allegiance to the cause of Islam.

Obaid-Chinoy was a faculty member in the media sciences department at SZABIST (Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and technology, Karachi). She started her film company, SOC Films, in Karachi in November 2011. Obaid-Chinoy is also the president of The Citizens Archive of Pakistan, a non profit organization dedicated to Cultural and Historic Preservation. (CAP).

She is an Academy Award and Emmy Award winning documentary filmmaker.

84th Academy AwardsSharmeen Obaid Chinoy’s sartorial choices were as successful as her Oscar-winning documentary. Very similar to her acceptance speech, her wardrobe was confident while retaining the pureness of being a sophisticated and contemporary Pakistani woman. She chose her designers (all women) intelligently: Sania Maskatiya for a young and progressive feel, Sana Safinaz for an essence of fusion with the world’s aesthetic ethos and Bunto Kazmi for the richness of hand-embroidered Pakistani couture. READ MORE

Her recent films include SAVING FACE, TRANSGENDERS: PAKISTAN’S OPEN SECRET AND PAKISTAN’S TALIBAN GENERATION, which aired on PBS, Channel 4, CBC, SBS and Arte and was the recipient of the Alfred I Dupont Award as well as The Association for International Broadcasting award. Sharmeen has made over a dozen-multi award winning films in over 10 countries around the world and is the first non-American to be awarded the Livingston Award for best international reporting.

In 2007, Sharmeen was awarded the broadcast journalist of the year award in the UK by One World Media for her work in a series of documentary films for Channel 4, which included a film about xenophobia in South Africa THE NEW APARTHEID and AFGHANISTAN UNVEILED. Her other films have been awarded The Overseas Press Club Award, The American Women in Radio and Television Award, The Cine Golden Eagle award and the Banff Rockie Award.

Sharmeen’s work centers around human rights and women’s issues and she has worked with refugees and marginalized communities from Saudi Arabia to Syria and from Timor Leste to the Philippines.

In 2012 Time Magazine included her in the magazine’s annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world.

sharmeen transgender open secretIn May 2012, from more than 4300 entries in 10 categories, Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy’s film, Transgenders – Pakistan’s Open Secret won the Platinum Remi Award at the 45th WorldFest Film Festival.

Many among Pakistan’s transgender community scrape a living through dancing, singing and begging on the streets of Karachi. Others earn money catering for the sexual needs of men in the city’s seedier districts.

Thrown out by their families as children, they usually find their way to the tougher parts of the city where, hidden from the conservative mainstream, groups of outcast transsexuals have come together to create underground communities or ‘families’.

This film follows the stories of three transgender people, each of whom represents a different way of life in the country.

Maggie is a prostitute who dreams of becoming an air hostess, while Chahat was abandoned to the streets by her middle-class family for her feminine ways. Sana is Karachi’s most sought-after transgender dancer, who wants to give up the profession after a particularly gruesome gang rape.

Transgenders were until very recently not entitled to Pakistani nationality. They still have scant access to education, employment or state protection, and are frequently victims of violence, although most of Karachi’s population tolerate them, partly due to beliefs that they can give blessings towards a happy and successful life and, equally, the threat that they may curse those who treat them badly.

But there is hope: the local tax office has advertised for transgenders to work as tax collectors. Clever government officials have realised that the embarrassment factor of a group of encountering a multi-colored singing she-males is enough to make even the most stubborn tax evaders pay up.

Can Sana get one of those jobs?

Will Chahat ever escape the desperate poverty she faces on a daily basis?

And will Maggie fulfil her dream to fly away?

True Stories commissions and showcases the best international feature documentaries.

sharmeen Lux-Style-Awards-2013Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy was acknowledged with a Lux Style Achievement Award on The 11th Lux Style Awards.

Lux Style Awards Widely acknowledged to be the Oscars of Pakistan.

She is the youngest-ever recipient for the Lux Style Achievement award.

In August 2012, Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy received a nominee for the Gucci Award for Women for documentary ‘Saving Face‘ as a director.

In December 2012, Sharmeen’s Saving Face won Best Short Award at the 28th annual IDA Documentary Awards and Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy has been voted one of the top five millennial women who has been fighting against domestic and societal violence. In late 2012, ‘Saving Face’ has received the Julian-Bartel Award and the 2012 Abu Dhabi Film Festival Audience Choice Award.

In Late July, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy got nominated as SAARC Goodwill Ambassador for HIV/AIDS.

Crystal Award Ceremony: Sharmeen Obaid ChinoySharmeen Obaid-Chinoy received the Crystal Award during the annual World Economic Forum (WEF) meeting 2013 in Davos 22 January 2013.

The World Economic Forum is an independent international organization committed to improving the state of the world by engaging business, political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas.

Incorporated as a foundation in 1971, and based in Geneva, Switzerland, it is impartial, not-for-profit and tied to no political, partisan or national interests. Sharmeen is the first Pakistani to be awarded this honor.
Sharmeen helped found the Citizens Archive of Pakistan, a nonprofit, volunteer organization that fosters and promotes community-wide interest in the culture and history of Pakistan. Citizens Archive works with thousands of children, teaching critical thinking skills and instilling a sense of pride about their history and identity.

sharmeen capThe Citizens Archive of Pakistan (CAP) is a non-profit organization dedicated to cultural and historic preservation, operating in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad. We seek to educate the community, foster an awareness of our nation’s history and instill pride in Pakistani citizens about their heritage.

CAP has focused its attention on the tradition of oral storytelling in Pakistan, emphasizing the importance of such narratives in a dialogue on national identity. Our organization has three main goals: to preserve and provide access to the archive, to build and support educational programs, and to develop educational products based on the testimonies collected.

We are passionate about sharing Pakistan’s stories with the educational outreach programs and the thousands of visitors who attend our festivals, and exhibitions. Our archives, exhibits and galleries change and grow as our understanding grows, and we strive to share our knowledge in original and exciting ways. READ MORE

Sharmeen Obaid (@sharmeenochinoy) on Twitter
Sharmeen Obaid Films | Facebook
Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy | Speaker |



A Celebration of Women

welcomes this visionary into our global Alumni with open arms, looking forward to future collaborations in bettering the lives of all women and children.


Brava Sharmeen!


A-Celebration-of-Women-Feature-Banner-e1352628808407 (1) 512

About Team Celebration

Team Celebration is a devoted group of women dedicated to sharing information that will better the lives of all women making this space a truly convenient Resource for Women globally. Speak Your Mind: You are invited to leave comments and questions below.

You simply type a KEY WORD into our SEARCH BOX at TOP RIGHT of Homepage and a list of associated topic articles offering truly educational and informative features will be at your fingertips.

Copyright 2022 @ A Celebration of Women™ The World Hub for Women Leaders That Care