INTERNATIONAL PROJECTS: NEPAL
In October 2008, Reel Youth returned to South East Asia to help tell the personal stories of a handful of youth living in two children’s homes in Nepal. The children were rescued from sentences as prisoners of war after being caught as child soldiers supporting the Maoist insurgency, or living in jail along with their incarcerated parents.
The film Family Stones is a story of hope and resilience, from children affected by unjust imprisonment, war, drug and human trafficking, and finally the loving environment of Prisoners Assistance Nepal and The Kamala Foundation.
In Nepal, it is common for children to live in jail along with their incarcerated parents. These are often the children of parents who cannot afford to support their children otherwise. As the families are poor, their access to food, clean water, health services and education are limited in the hierarchal prisons system of Nepal.
Thousands of children have been abducted and conscripted, by force, into the Maoist “People’s War” against imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism. These children, many of the lowest castes, are indoctrinated with the Maoist ideals and used as combatants, informants, cooks, porters or human shields. Nepal has few programs to rehabilitate these traumatized child soldiers.
The film featured the work of the founder of The Kamala Foundation, Canadian Zackary Burton, and it's sister organization, Prisoners Assistance Nepal. The Kamala Foundation and Prisoners Assistance Nepal are non-profit organizations who support, and run loving and healthy children’s homes for young people who have been rescued from prisons and combat. They provide rehabilitation and education, build life skills, and nurture existing relationships with incarcerated parents.
The film was produced with the support of the Government of Canada through the Canadian international Development Agency (CIDA).
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Artwork by Jordan Bent