KUED hosts free film screening at City Library in Salt Lake | ParkRecord.com

KUED hosts free film screening at City Library in Salt Lake

Submitted by KUED

KUED and the Center for Documentary Expression and Arts (CDEA) will present a free public screening of "Pushing the Elephant" as part of Utah’s Refugee Awareness at 7 p.m. on Thursday, June 14, at the City Library, 210 E. 400 South, in Salt Lake City.

The 90-minute documentary film tells the story of Rose Mapendo, who was imprisoned with her family during violence that engulfed the Democratic Republic of Congo. She was later able to resettle in Phoenix, Ariz. with her children, except for one daughter who remained behind. Rose s harrowing experiences include the nighttime arrest of her entire family by government agents, the execution of her husband, the birth of their twin sons in prison and grim negotiations with prison guards to save the lives of her children.

Rose emerged from the horrific experience advocating forgiveness and reconciliation. In a country where ethnic violence has created seemingly irreparable rifts among Tutsis, Hutus, and other Congolese, this remarkable woman is a vital voice in her beleaguered nation’s search for peace.

Currently, Rose is confronted with teaching one of her most recalcitrant students how to forgive — Nangabire, the daughter who remained behind in the Congo and was recently reunited with her mother in Phoenix, Arizona.

"Pushing the Elephant" joins the updated CDEA exhibit "Faces and Voices of Refugee Youth," on display at The City Library during Utah’s Refugee Awareness Month. Following the film, CDEA and KUED will host a panel discussion of the film and its relevance to the lives of Utah refugees. The panel is comprised of four Utah women, two who work with refugees and two who are refugees.

  • Ze Min Xiao, a Chinese woman born in Viet Nam who came to the United States as an immigrant. She has learned about refugees from her husband’s family, who came to the U.S. as refugees, and through her job as Refugee Services Liaison for Salt Lake County, where she coordinates county level resources to assist refugees.
  • Amy Wylie is the Program Specialist for Utah State Department of Work Force Services Refugee Services Office. She coordinates and oversees services for refugees coming to Utah, including providing access to health care, food stamps, financial assistance, ESL programs and employment counseling and training.
  • Jacqueline Mukasafari is a refugee from Rwanda who has been employed as a case manager at the Asian Association of Utah since 2008. She works primarily with refugees from Burundi, Congo, Somali, and Rwanda and assists them with medical appointments, enrolling in ESL classes, and general acculturation skills.
  • Rozina Bahlibi was born and raised in Eritrea and came to the United States as a young refugee in 1990. Over the past 20 years, she has worked as translator for the International Rescue Committee and volunteered countless hours to help refugees from Eritrea and Ethiopia in the complex task of resettlement. Recently, Rozina opened the Red Sea Café, a restaurant in Sugar House that specializes in Ethiopian and Eritrean cuisine.