Friday, October 09, 2015

New documentary film on DRC's child miners to debut this month

We’re about to debut our work on a special project, an important documentary film, Maisha: A New Life Outside the Mines. It takes you inside the copper and cobalt mines of Democratic Republic of the Congo, the first rung of the global supply chain of “digital minerals” that is trapping millions in poverty.

The film will make its debut in Rome on 29 October at 4:00 p.m. at Radio Vaticana, Sala Marconi, Piazza Pia 3. It will be followed by an important round-table discussion on conflict minerals. Full details are here.

Here are some images from our reporting trip to the DRC.

Background on the film:
This spring, me and the Italian documentary filmmaker Luca Paradiso were granted unprecedented access to the artisanal pit mines around Kolwezi, located in the DRC's mineral-rich Katanga region. This little known part of the wpowerful grassroots project run by the Good Shepherd Sisters that is helping the most at-risk by building an alternative to the mines - a school for ex-child miners, and a cooperative farm and a budding clothing design enterprise for former miners.
orld powers our digital age, giving us the raw materials for mobile phones, computers and the electric grid. We saw first-hand what human rights activists had been reporting indirectly: that there is an appalling level of human misery and exploitation in the mines. We also reported on a

The 30-minute film, sponsored by the U.S. Embassy to the Holy See, offers a rare, up-close look inside the harsh -- and even lethal -- world of artisanal copper and cobalt mining. The film shares a hopeful message as well, showing how an impoverished Congolese community is beating the odds to to build a better, more sustainable tomorrow, and in turn laying waste to the cycle of poverty, exploitation and abuse that traps so many here.