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FILM FEST: In Summary

February 22nd, 2006

Musician and producer Andy Seaver (ndcv) made an appearance at the 14th Annual Amnesty International Film Festival. Andy is the creator of the project’s moody, ambient music; some of it is composed specifically for FEAR and some I find on his albums.

I don’t know what the ticket sales were but I know I didn’t recognize most of the people at the screening. FEAR shared the hour with a documentary on journalism in Iraq and how it’s difficult to tell a balanced story because journalists are often targeted for kidnapping or assasination. I found the film to be good–and pertinent.

Discussion aferwards started with a drawn-out commentary on the war in Iraq which was then shifted via the theme of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to FEAR and sexual violence. With Rebecca in attendance, the audience heard first hand how the PTSD symptoms of war journalists, soldiers, and civilians are the same kinds of symptoms experienced by rape survivors. It didn’t take long for several hands to be raised but with only a short window for discussion before the next film we had to take the Q and A out into the foyer of the Northwest Film Forum.

I have to say…it still surprises me when I end up speaking about this project and what I’ve learned from it. I’m far from a professional and have no counseling or therapy background, but I’m finding more and more confidence in my voice for the project–from a sexual violence perspective, a documentary photographer’s perspective, and that of a non-profit founder.

Afterwards, over coffee at Cafe Vita, SANE nurse Alison Cathro (left) expressed her interest in working more closely with the project–beyond my documentation of her work in the ER. Volunteers with time, energy, and skills to help develop the project are always encouraged–and are encouraging. Cathro is interested in helping bring FEAR to public schools through presentations, screenings, and curriculum. We’ll see how it goes as with everything about this project, until we have some substantive revenue or donations, things only get done when we find the spare time.

The cool coincidence? In May I’m likely (no guarantees) to be covering a date rape trial in which Cathro is will testify as she performed the forensic exam. Victim and judge allowing, this process should provide a more complete SANE story.

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