The film will be followed by a Q&A with the director and producer Jonathan Remple and MakeSense Co-Founder Christian Vanizette.
HORiZONS: Waynak (Where are you?) is a 6-episode documentary film about social entrepreneurs in the Near East and Europe, currently developing short, middle and long term solutions to impact the Refugees ‘Crisis’.
Jonathan Remple is a Director / Producer who has filmed in 30+ countries with the What Took You So Long? guerrilla film collective, which specializes in telling positive stories in complex international situations. He's produced documentaries for the United Nations, Virgin Records, VICE, Netflix, Google, and Foreign Policy.
About MakeSense: MakeSense makes it possible for anyone in the world to get involved at any level to solve social and environmental issues. We empower people to engage in projects and challenges that help social entrepreneurs. By solving multiple concrete challenges, they contribute to solutions for some of the biggest problems faced by our society. We turn social engagement into an easy, fun and efficient learning experience, accessible to absolutely everyone at a global scale. Thus, making it possible for individuals all over the world with different backgrounds to act at a local level for a global mission.
HORiZONS: Waynak (Where are you?
1. Music has no race (Istanbul – Turkey)
Owen, Bashar, and Yasu are from three different worlds, but in a city that straddles two continents, this blend of cultures seems all too natural. They are three of 8-10 musicians from America, Turkey, Kurdistan, Syria, and Europe who have come together in Istanbul to form the band Country For Syria. They each bring a unique style and voice to an eclectic group that highlights the oddly unsurprising coincidence that country western, Arabic, Turkish, and Kurdish music tend to sing about similar things. These three characters embody a crucial truth of the migrant crisis that is often ignored by the media; creating beauty and forging bonds in the midst of this chaos is not a miracle, it is a decision.
2. Someone was here (Berlin — Germany)
It took a lot for Liann to leave Syria. He was a rapper, a boxer, and an active protester, but like many people, he left to protect his family, and himself. When he arrived in Germany, a guy beatboxing on the streets of Berlin caught his ear. The next thing he knew he was in a drama workshop with Impulse organization, warming up to classical music and Ahmed’s stern but playful instruction. This group of refugees, migrants, and volunteers draw from their experiences and create dramatic performances with social and political statements that they perform any chance they get. This group of young people has changed much in the years since its inception, some have come and gone, and some have stuck around. The space they have created together isn’t perfect, but it is a space that highlights the critical distinction we must make between truly living, and simply not dying.
3. There was a need (London – United Kingdom Calais – France)
Tech is a relative newcomer to the refugee crisis, but its involvement has big implications across the board in the response to this situation. The most important thing is collaboration. Collaboration between those that are on the ground, and those that are in the office. Josephine is a co-founder of Techfugees, which works to bring together tech initiatives that create solutions to the crisis, and help them scale their solutions to meet these needs on a bigger scale. The Infobus is on the opposite side of the spectrum, it lives on the ground in the Calais Jungle refugee camp in northern France, it is a horse van outfitted as a massive hotspot run by two independent volunteers who live just outside the Jungle. This story shows the importance of collaboration between those working on the front lines and those coordinating from afar. Both are necessary to create lasting solutions to this crisis.
4. Sing don’t speak (Bekaa Valley – Lebanon)
Hamida is 12 years old, she loves to sing. Sabine is a clown that works with children in refugee camps in the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon. The project she started called Caravan helps refugees build a story, any story they want, and then records them reading it. The process culminates in an interpretive performance of the story which is performed on the streets and in the camps. The problem is, Hamida has trouble reading. She stutters when she reads, making her story hard to follow. This is the story of how these two ladies worked together to find a solution.
5. Even normal people belong (Istanbul – Turkey)
The migrant crisis and humanity’s response to it differs from place to place. In Greece almost all refugees are in camps run by the military, with NGOs and volunteers helping where and when they can. In Turkey, 90% of migrants are outside of camps. No one relies on the government to help, there is no large scale solution being applied nationwide. In Turkey, the solution comes from below, in the form of community centers like the ones developed by Small Projects Istanbul. They are a collective response of the Turkish and international population to a crisis without a solution. Solidarity is their answer. Neighborhoods opened associations to reach out to newcomers, cafes just like Komşu Kafe, or bookstores opened to welcome people of all walks of life, advocating for collaborative existence based on equality. In these places Syrians are not refugees, they are not coming to receive free services because of their unfortunate circumstances. They are coming as equals, to drink coffee, play football, make art, to work. They come to these places just like everyone else does, to carve out a small slice of life for them to enjoy. These community centers make no political statements, their very existence says enough.
6. You have to open it (Piraeus – Greece)
Piraeus Port, Athens, Greece. Sarra and Renata are part of a group of seasoned independent volunteers known as the ‘Czech Team’. For six months they lived in and operated from a section of the port called the Stonehouse, a large stone warehouse that was home to over 1300 refugees. Like many other volunteers across the region, they left their lives behind and joined the frontline, helping in whatever way they could. At the time of filming, despite the already extremely strenuous living conditions, the government had been applying pressure on the independently run camp in an attempt to encourage refugees to move to formal, army-run camps. As a result, the police systematically underestimated the number of people living at Piraeus, giving them just cause to decrease the food and water deliveries every day. With an attitude of familial solidarity and a will to keep the camp running, the Czech Team came up with a solution that could only have been made by independent volunteers: You don’t want to give them food? That’s OK, we’ll cook.
A documentary film by Make Sense Stories. 45min. Digital.
Presented by Zoinia
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