Solar Cinema Malta - Valletta 2018

We are very proud to present that Solar Cinema will be part of the Cultural Programme of Valletta 2018, European Cultural Capital. We will tour the islands of Malta and Gozo with weekly screenings on the most beautiful locations. Bringing film close to the audiences. On village squares, beaches and piazza's everybody is welcomed to come and enjoy our film screenings. We will organise a kick-off event during the Green Festival, with stopmotion animation workshops for children and our Go Greener Shorts Filmprogramme screened on a big square in the city of Valletta! Keep checking our facebook and our Malta 2018 webpage for all updates and programme information.

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New Sponsor: Green Trust Consultancy

We are very happy to announce our latest sponsor! GreenTrust Consultancy is a specialist in wind energy projects in The Netherlands and abroad. Their motto is Changing Energy. Green Trust is working on the transition from conventional to renewable energy. After presenting the work of Solar World Cinema at their yearly ‘GreenTrust and Friends’ day, where specialists in the green energy business gathered to talk about their work and were inspired by several ‘green’ projects, we were happy to hear that GreenTrust wanted to sponsor us. With their donation we have been able to support our partner project: Solar Cinema Nepal. The very dedicated projectleader Abhimanyu Humagain is running this small local solar powered cinema, reaching out to the most remote areas of Nepal. Sometimes moving all of his equipment by foot, tractor of donkey! His set up needs a boost and with the help of the sponsorship of Greentrust a investment in new equipment can be made! This enables Solar Cinema Nepal to keep up their fantastic work.

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Solar Cinema in the Sahara

For the past thirteen years, the Western Sahara International Film Festival (FiSahara) has been screening movies annually for thousands of Sahrawi refugees who live in a remote corner of the Sahara Desert, near the Algerian town of Tindouf -- a place where films are rarely seen. But after this edition on October 11-16, refugees will no longer have to wait an entire year to congregate in front of movie screens: FiSahara and Solar World Cinema have partnered to create Solar Cinema Western Sahara, that will tour the camps year-round, making film much more available to camp residents. Solar Cinema Western Sahara will launch on FiSahara's opening night, October 12th in the Dakhla refugee camp, with the screening of the documentary film Sonita by Iranian filmmaker Rokhsareh Ghaem Maghami, an extraordinary story of courage and audacity featuring a young teenage girl, Sonita Alizadeh, who as an undocumented Afghan in Iran struggles against the odds to avoid child marriage and realize her dream of becoming a rap star. Ghaem Maghami will be at FiSahara to present. Sonita is one of the films that will travel with the Solar Cinema Western Sahara to all Saharawi refugee camps in the area during this coming year. The project will be managed by a local Sahrawi team.  The Sahrawi mobile cinema will use a converted Landcruiser fitted with solar panels, batteries and screening equipment that recently travelled from the Netherlands to the camps as part of a humanitarian convoy. Sahrawis in the camps are the refugees of the four-decade conflict in Western Sahara, which remains one of the world’s most invisible crises. The Western Sahara, a former Spanish colony rich in natural resources, stretches along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean between Morocco and Mauritania. Spain reached an agreement with Morocco and Mauritania as it was withdrawing, allowing them to invade. Half of the indigenous population fled the brutal invasion into the Algerian desert and settled in refugee camps, where they remain today. The other half still lives under Moroccan occupation -- Mauritania withdrew in 1979 -- separated from family members by a 2.600 kilometer-long Moroco-built wall sewn with millions of landmines. The UN Security Council, which called for a referendum on self-determination 25 years ago, is currently deadlocked on a solution. Access to basic services such as drinking water, electricity and food is scarce in the refugee camps, and its residents are entirely dependent on foreign humanitarian aid. The population has very little access to culture, leisure and entertainment and suffers from extreme social and geographic isolation. Children and youth are especially vulnerable to depression as they view their future devoid of opportunity and hope.  Film is a powerful tool for social change, and for Sahrawis it offers a respite from the harshness of everyday life, as well as a window to the world and a medium to preserve their rich cultural identity -- which is key to their survival as a people. FiSahara's film school, EFA Abidin Kaid Saleh, trains dozens of Sahrawi filmmakers, who are giving birth to a brand-new indigenous Sahrawi cinematography. Through the screenings of these locally made films, Solar Cinema preserves and showcases Sahrawi identity.  In addition, Solar Cinema Western Sahara will also screen a variety of films, including independent international cinema, human rights and entertainment movies, some from FiSahara's program. Sahrawis will be able to exchange locally made films with other Solar Cinema projects, providing a rich tapestry of stories from around the world. Local managers will receive technical training to operate the cinema, as well as to organize and moderate panel discussions. This year, as FiSahara's screens in Dakhla go dark at the close of the festival, they will light up again and again all year round powered by the only natural resource available to the refugees: sunlight!

For the past thirteen years, the Western Sahara International Film Festival (FiSahara) has been screening movies annually for thousands of Sahrawi refugees who live in a remote corner of the Sahara Desert, near the Algerian town of Tindouf -- a place where films are rarely seen. But after this edition on October 11-16, refugees will no longer have to wait an entire year to congregate in front of movie screens: FiSahara and Solar World Cinema have partnered to create Solar Cinema Western Sahara, that will tour the camps year-round, making film much more available to camp residents.

Solar Cinema Western Sahara will launch on FiSahara's opening night, October 12th in the Dakhla refugee camp, with the screening of the documentary film Sonita by Iranian filmmaker Rokhsareh Ghaem Maghami, an extraordinary story of courage and audacity featuring a young teenage girl, Sonita Alizadeh, who as an undocumented Afghan in Iran struggles against the odds to avoid child marriage and realize her dream of becoming a rap star. Ghaem Maghami will be at FiSahara to present. Sonita is one of the films that will travel with the Solar Cinema Western Sahara to all Saharawi refugee camps in the area during this coming year. The project will be managed by a local Sahrawi team. 

The Sahrawi mobile cinema will use a converted Landcruiser fitted with solar panels, batteries and screening equipment that recently travelled from the Netherlands to the camps as part of a humanitarian convoy.

Sahrawis in the camps are the refugees of the four-decade conflict in Western Sahara, which remains one of the world’s most invisible crises. The Western Sahara, a former Spanish colony rich in natural resources, stretches along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean between Morocco and Mauritania. Spain reached an agreement with Morocco and Mauritania as it was withdrawing, allowing them to invade. Half of the indigenous population fled the brutal invasion into the Algerian desert and settled in refugee camps, where they remain today. The other half still lives under Moroccan occupation -- Mauritania withdrew in 1979 -- separated from family members by a 2.600 kilometer-long Moroco-built wall sewn with millions of landmines. The UN Security Council, which called for a referendum on self-determination 25 years ago, is currently deadlocked on a solution. Access to basic services such as drinking water, electricity and food is scarce in the refugee camps, and its residents are entirely dependent on foreign humanitarian aid. The population has very little access to culture, leisure and entertainment and suffers from extreme social and geographic isolation. Children and youth are especially vulnerable to depression as they view their future devoid of opportunity and hope. 

Film is a powerful tool for social change, and for Sahrawis it offers a respite from the harshness of everyday life, as well as a window to the world and a medium to preserve their rich cultural identity -- which is key to their survival as a people. FiSahara's film school, EFA Abidin Kaid Saleh, trains dozens of Sahrawi filmmakers, who are giving birth to a brand-new indigenous Sahrawi cinematography. Through the screenings of these locally made films, Solar Cinema preserves and showcases Sahrawi identity. 

In addition, Solar Cinema Western Sahara will also screen a variety of films, including independent international cinema, human rights and entertainment movies, some from FiSahara's program. Sahrawis will be able to exchange locally made films with other Solar Cinema projects, providing a rich tapestry of stories from around the world. Local managers will receive technical training to operate the cinema, as well as to organize and moderate panel discussions.

This year, as FiSahara's screens in Dakhla go dark at the close of the festival, they will light up again and again all year round powered by the only natural resource available to the refugees: sunlight!

Donate iPads for Indonesia

The end of July we will, in collaboration with our local team, launch Solar Cinema Indonesia. Our mobile cinema on solar energy. We would love to start right away with our sustainable film workshops, however we need iPads in order to complete our stop-motion studios. Our education program makes use of specially designed studios with a build-in Ipad. We could really use some second hand iPads to start the workshops. 

In the workshops, short stop-motion films are made that afterwards are presented on the screen. We believe that workshops combined with the film screenings have an even bigger impact on communities. Children or youngsters participating in the workshops invite their families and friends to the film screenings and spread their freshly acquired knowledge.

We love to:

•   Stimulate cinematographic talent
•   Create regional content and audiences for independent cinema
•   Bridge international borders through culture and connect audiences   through content
•   Educate about sustainable energy
•   Inspire people to think about their environment

With your help we can accomplish these goals. If you have a second hand iPad you would like to donate, please email us. Thank you so much in advance!

New partners from Croatia

We are delighted to have started a collaboration with new partners in Croatia. The team of Via Solis visited the Netherlands for a brief set-up training. Technical knowledge was exchanged. The croatian team collected all the necessary solar equipment and set off back to Zagreb. In spring the Solar Cinema Adria will have it's launch and will start touring the country. The project Screen on the Green will now be totally 'green' with the use of solar energy! A special thanks to our partners Victron Energy and LG Solar the solar division of LG Electronics.

UvA Alumnus Award for Sahara project!

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Last Saturday Maartje Piersma won the UvA Alumnus Award for our project in the South-Western Sahara. "The UvA Alumnus award is an incentive for UvA alumni who, via an appealing and innovative project, make a special contribution to society. The winner is an inspiration to others and serves as a promise for the future."

After visiting the South-Western Sahara last May, we are currently setting upa local Solar Cinema in collaboration with FiSahara film festival and the TheAbidin Kaid Saleh audiovisual school.

The Western Sahara’s almost four-decade conflict is one of the world’s most invisible crises. Exactly 40 years ago Morocco and Mauritania occupied the Western Sahara when Spain, the former colonial power, reached an agreement allowing the invasion to go forward. Thousands of Sahrawis, including many women and children, fled from the repression that followed and crossed into Algeria, where they were allowed to settle near the town of Tindouf.

Access to basic services such as drinking water, electricity and food is scarce. Basic life in this remote, isolated corner of the desert cannot be sustained in this environment, and the camps are completely dependent on foreign humanitarian aid. The population has very little access to culture, leisure and entertainment and suffers from extreme social and geographic isolation. We are planning to launch Sahrawi Solar Cinema in May 2016. The Alumnus Award is a great contribution to this goal!

Hague Talks

We participated in the  Hague Talks, a meeting place for creative minds, peace inventors and game changers in the field of peace and justice. It is a stage and breeding place for new ideas and perspectives, a forum for discussion and a starting point for concrete action. Sharing our mission and story.

 

Support from LG Electronics!

We are very happy to announce that LG Electronics decided to sponsor our global activities,  so we can expand our work and pursue our dream of bringing unseen film to unusual places. We would like to share this wonderful quote: 

"We are very pleased that we can support Solar World Cinema with their important work," says Michael Harre, Vice President EU Solar Group at LG Electronics. "Even in places where people do not get the chance to attend a cinema screening, can now thanks to solar energy, a film being viewed about important subjects such as environmental protection and sustainable energy. In our opinion this is a honourable initiative, which we would like to support. Especially because it contributes to the global awareness of the importance of solar energy." 

On tour in Spain

In a few weeks Solar Cinema will travel from The Netherlands to Spain to go on TOUR along the major surf meccas of the Catabric Sea. We have teamed up with the amazing Surfilmfestibal from San Sebastian and selected a special film and workshop programme focussing on sustainability and water. We will screen:  La Primera Ola, a documentary by Pedro Temboury about the origins of surfing in Spain with all legends involved. And El Hijo del Pescador, directed by Chris Malloy. And as always we offer our short program before the feature film: Go Greener Shorts. With some amazing shorts of young talents. The screenings will be the first Solar Cinema shows organized in Spain, with the aim to launch Solar Cinema Spain next summer.
During this SurfilmTOUR we offer a special workshop program during the day; with the local youth we will make stop-motion films with recycled materials as protagonists. We teach youngsters how to create their own stories through film. Creating short stop-motion films and at the same time clean the local beaches, turning plastic waste into film characters. At night before the official film program we screen the results of the workshop, which are made possible by the Evens Foundation

Solar Cinema SurfilmTOUR:
09-07 Mundaka. Centro del pueblo. 22.30h
10-07 Santander. Plaza Porticada. 22.30h. (or when raining: Cine Los Ángeles)
11-07. La Coruña. Paseo del Parrote. 22.45h

Photocredits: Archivo Almoguera_Surf Club Malaga 1971 - Archivo Julio del Val_Sopelana  - Rodrigo-Forias-Moreno

 

 

 

 

Sahrauis, cinema, sand and lots of sun

Solar World Cinema returned from the Western Sahara, it was an amazing trip. More than we had ever expected, in such a beautiful but remote area with incredible friendly people. We visited the FiSahara filmfestival in Dahkla refugeecamp in Algeria, a trip of 25 hours to get there, a very desolated area depending on humanitarian help for over 40 years now. The area has neither electricity nor streaming water. Evening lights are powered via car batteries and solar panels. Once a year FiSahara organizes a filmfestival in Dahkla, however the other 3 refugeecamps surrounding Tindouf do not have access to the festival or the films. In collaboration with the local filmschool we will set up Solar Cinema Sahraui, a truck with solar panels on the roof, for mobile open-air cinema. Cinema is still young amongst the Sahraui people, although it can strengthen their independent voice and development.


Due to this research trip we are now able to adept our concept to the area and local circumstances, furthermore we spoke to the Saharaui minister of culture who supports the idea, to the filmschool who's ex students will lead the projections, did TV interviews for an Algerian broadcasting company, spoke with local filmmakers who told us a lot about the local (cultural) reality and to many other interesting people. The next step is to get all the pieces of the puzzle together and create a strong local production team, write a plan for funding partners, get the hardware and salaries together and launch during the FiSahara 2016 edition!

Solar Cinema team travels to the Western Sahara

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From the 28th of April until the 4th of May the Solar Cinema team will travel to the FiSahara Film Festival in the Western Sahara. We plan to set up a local Solar Cinema in collaboration with the film festival and The Abidin Kaid Saleh audiovisual school at the Dakhla refugee camp in Algeria. The Solar Cinema Sahrawi will be traveling around the area and supplying film and workshops. We will keep you posted on the developments and are looking forward to this amazing trip!