We’ve been staying with Sinema Anba Zetwal , and have mentioned them a lot in the blog, here’s some information about them written by Laurence – FastForward HAITI and MWÈM Foundation have been alive and active in the Haitian community since 2002 Through “Sinema anba Zetwal” Cinema Under the Stars, FastForward HAITI and the MWEM Foundation have created a setting where local Haitian communities can come together and share the experience of viewing and learning from documentaries and films produced (mostly) by-Haitians for-Haitians; all this, in a conscious effort to give viewers an important opportunity to look at themselves, their culture, and their patrimony objectively. The Haiti Kids Kino project is now collaborating with sinema anba zetwa (check out this link to see some of their work).
We had so much kit on the plane , we couldn’t carry a frame for the screen, and had to trust in our luck that we’d be able to improvise out here…
Luckily for us Eric, the Sinema Anba Zetw (Cinema under the Stars) tech guy got on the case , designing a simple lightweight rig for us that consists of two 14 ft poles which pin into the ground and can collapse down for transport. His big concern from many years projecting outside in Haiti is that really strong winds can come up in the space of ten minutes and rip a screen away… potentially very dangerous …Eric’s design means that if winds do blow up we can pull the screen off to one side – like a shower curtain…Eric’s friend Pellej took the design off and in the afternoon cut and welded the parts
This evening we tried it out in Laurence’s garden. Not enough room to tension the screen properly… but its looking good. merci eric et pellej!
We’re here… both totally exhausted. Staying with the Sinema Anba Zetwal (Cinema Under the Stars) guys in Petionville, a suburb of Port au Prince. They took us around a tent city tonight … one of the largest. We were both taken aback by how calm and well organised it was – 35,000 people living on what was a golf course. On the bus ride in earlier we saw many many collapsed buildings, and tents in almost every spare space… but we havent seen the worst of the damage yet. Eric the Cinema Under the Stars tech guy is going to help us make a rig for the screen… basically two 12 foot poles that break down into 4 pieces for easy transportation. As soon as they’re made, we’ll do a screening in Laurence’s neighborhood, and then the tent city. Feeling very tired, but feeling like we’re on our way.
Tonight’s our last night in Santo Domingo – tomorrow morning we’re off to Haiti to stay with Laurence Magloire of Sinema Anba Zetwal (cinema under the stars) in Port au Prince…. Its been a long week… circumventing language barriers, adapting to heat and rain, buying gear, setting up mobile phones, battling obstructive customs who wanted to impound our generator (thanks to a huge effort from esther and kari, and dave refusing to leave the customs office for five hours), making new contacts in haiti, finally finding some good cheap eating places, and doing some long hikes through the suburbs to find the coach station. The carnival started today! … it’s jaw dropping … there will probably be stragglers on the streets when we get up to go to the bus tomoro. we managed to get down to the parade for a couple of hours before packing tonight. (see the photos) we’re off for one rum and coke before bed.
and then tomorrow, haiti and a different world… Marko and Dave
Saturday 6th March 2010
Two venues – the Cube (6pm to 1am)/ the Croft (8pm to 3am)
We're in Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic... the journey went surprisingly smoothly (so far!) and we got to our
hotel with all the bags and kit intact late last night...
Today we had a long conversation with an american guy, Chris from you NYC, who had come to Haiti on his own to
volunteer and was there for the last five weeks, now on his way home
We got lots of useful advice and info from him and a couple of very good contacts - Love a Child children's hospital
just west of the border town Jimani , and Lesley Pinard a Haitian guy with DR diplomatic clearance who is based in a
wharehouse in port au prince and is travelling around 7 tent cities with spanish doctors doing mobile medical clinics.
Chris says the UN and amercan army is barely visible where he was working in Port au Prince , you only ever see them
in cars. .. . the only outsiders doing anything useful are volunteer organisations.
While conditions are very seriously bad over there , he said the Haitian people are very friendly and welcoming and he
had no experience of violence . but he did stess the importance of hooking up with other organisations for transport,
accomodation and food
His main concern was the coming rains (which will get seriously bad in May) because of the lack of working sewage system.
He was also very positive about our project - and instantly got it .... for morale raising and he also pointed out the
importance to parents and carers to have a break as kids watch films...
so we're feeling optimistic and energised!
will be here for a few days preparing (and going back to Punta Cana airport to pick up the generator on Thursday)
Marko and David