SLEEPY HOLLOW, N.Y. -- The Through a Clear Lens project, formulated by the JCC on the Hudson, will team up Jewish and Latino teens to develop seven- to 10-minute films that will look at their respective cultures, similarities and differences, in an effort to break down barriers.
“Several years ago I read an article about a girl who heard a Holocaust survivor speak at her school," said Laura Kramer, project director of Through a Clear Lens. "His experience touched her profoundly, and she went up and spoke with him after the talk. The reason his story resonated with her was because she was a survivor of the genocide in Rwanda -- something she did not share with anyone, because she felt people could not begin to understand her experience.
“She ended up forming a very close bond with this older Jewish man (she became close with his family as well), and they also did speaking tours together. Although it was something terrible that brought them to each other, I love the image of a young Rwandan girl and this old Jewish man and the friendship they shared and the bonds they forged."
The films will be showcased as a film festival in March or April. This is an opportunity to build a bridge between the local Jewish and Latino communities through filmmaking collaboration.
“I think this project will clear up some of the stereotypes that both of these cultures have,” said Sleepy Hollow High School senior Alexandra Torres, who expects the process to “be very interesting and fun.”
The work will take place after-school at Sleepy Hollow High.
So far, participating students are from the school’s Latin American Student Association and from the Jewish Culture Club, newly formed as a result of this project. Additional recruiting is taking place through the Rivertowns Jewish Consortium (the JCC and five local Jewish congregations). Anyone interested in joining or helping “Through a Clear Lens,” should contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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