Sophie Gore Browne from Chicken & Egg pictures joins us as a guest blogger

Chicken & Egg Pictures in partnership with Working Films hosted another STORY LEADS TO ACTION at 92YTribeca, with a screening of the documentary Good Fortune by filmmakers Landon Van Soest and Jeremy Levine.

Set in Kenya, the documentary vividly calls into question the positive impact of international development organizations, from the housing reconstruction efforts of the UN in the slums of Kibera to a private agri-business in the swamp lands of Yala. The film raises issues about dead aid, and the politics of international development which often excludes the involvement of the very people these organizations are trying to help.

The film has had a successful year on the festival circuit along with a notable P.O.V. broadcast, but the aim of the night was to put heads together with NY guest educators to hash out how this film could really make a difference where it is most needed; among students learning international development, aid organizations, the donor community, inter-governmental organizations like the UN/World Bank/IMF that promote foreign investment in developing countries.

From left to right: Landon Van Soest, Jeremy Levine, Eliza Licht, David Gerwin, Dr. Mojúbàobolú Olúfúnké Okome

Dr. Mojúbàobolú Olúfúnké Okome, Professor of Political Science; Eliza Licht, Director, Community Engagement and Education, P.O.V.; and David Gerwin, Associate Professor, Coordinator, Program in Social Studies, all provided varied personal insight on the content of the film and the purpose to which it could be most effectively used.

P.O.V. came away with ideas for compiling an education packet to be distributed with the film to various education institutions and both Professors spoke about how the film could be used in the class room. Beyond the guest speakers contributions to the conversation, filmmakers in the audience shared their views and ideas about ways to take this film beyond the film circuit.

Audience members where encouraged to write their questions and ideas down, whilst the conversation was taking place, for the filmmakers to take home and transform into practical audience engagement strategies.

Here are some of audience members’ suggestions:
•    Show the film to large foundations to encourage them to support projects with local involvement.
•    Include more statistics for the educational version.
•    Give updates on what is happening with the stories now.
•    Provide more info on different approaches to development like microlending.
•    We also got lots of great suggestions for organizations to highlight for our educational guide and venues to screen the film.

Thanks to all!

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