By Adrielle Knight, CCESL Refugee-Focused Fellow, Graduate School of Social Work
A screening of the film Soufra brought together over 120 people in Maglione Hall. This documentary depicts the story of a Syrian refugee woman named Mariam who actualized her dream of starting her own catering business to empower other Syrian women in a refugee camp in Lebanon. The screening provided an opportunity for a number of people working with refugee-related issues to come together and learn, support, and share information and stories with one another. Moreover, the documentary provided a great gateway into an engaging question and answer panel where attendees could learn more about events to support the refugee community.
In my position as the refugee-focused Community-Engaged Fellow with the Center for Community Engagement to advance Scholarship and Learning (CCESL), I worked with Korbel’s No Lost Generation student group to host a screening of the film. Faculty, staff, students and community members gathered to watch this film and then hear a panel discussion featuring women sharing their own stories and experiences as refugees settling in Denver. Attendees were then invited to ask questions and learn more about ways to support and engage with organizations supporting refugees in and around Denver.
Food served at the event supported a catering company called Zaki, owned by a local Syrian family. Products such as jewelry, scarves, and artwork made by local refugees and immigrants were available for purchase through the pop-up R Bazaar market on-site as well. It was a great end to the evening as almost $1,000 was raised through this event to support the African Community Center and the International Rescue Committee.