AfriDocs: Migrant Stories Changing the Narrative on Migration Documentaries to Air Across Africa

November 09, 2018

AfriDocs, Africa’s only free streaming platform for documentary films, is launching an informative and engaging series of films that tackle the complex issues of immigration and migration that will be broadcast on select TV channels and streamed for free on the AfriDocs platform.

Using the art of storytelling and the power of documentary filmmaking, AfriDocs will be focusing on the important issues and debates around irregular immigration. AfrDocs will showcase stories told from the perspective of African migrants during their harrowing attempts to make it to Europe in hopes of a better life. Take a journey through film that shows the realities, the honest feelings and the facts about attempting to make it across land and sea at all cost.

These films, many of them produced from an African perspective, offer a window into the diverse experiences of refugees, migrants, and those left behind. With the aim of both debunking many of the rumours that exist about immigration and migrants, as well as to humanize the people so often objectified through the West’s portrayal, these six films will be broadcast on a range of free to air television stations in Nigeria, Ghana, Somalia and Ethiopia, as well as on the AfriDocs streaming platform,

AfriDocs is committed to the broadcasting and streaming of African focused documentaries that reflect African voices and with this specialized focus on migration, the series hopes to inspire conversation, debate, and the production of more African produced content.

With the support of the German Foreign Office, AfriDocs will present these films as part of outreach to migrants, and those considering migration in order to enable them to make more informed and empowered decisions.

Kana TV in Ethiopia, SNTV and Horn Cable in Somalia, TV3 in Ghana, Life TV in West Africa and Silverbird TV in Nigeria will screen the films listed below over the next few weeks, while AfriDocs Migrant stories can also be streamed here:

Additionally, AfriDocs will be engaging with the filmmakers from these documentaries and inviting people to share their experiences and insights via social media conversations. Make sure to follow and be part of the conversations using #MigrantStories on on twitter @afri_docs.

The following films will be screened in key territories as per the schedule listed below.

#MyEscape | Elke Sasse | Global | 2016 | 90 min

The mobile phone, for a lot of refugees, is an essential tool to organize their escape: They use it as a GPS, to get information or exchange information in groups, to contact smugglers and keep contact to family members and friends. Some use as a “reporter tool”. Made up from mobile phone footage of migrants or refugees from Syria, Afghanistan and Eritrea during their escape journeys to Europe, plus interviews after their arrival in Germany (or Europe).

For #MyEscape the filmmakers edited material filmed by refugees with only the in-depth interviews after their arrival were filmed by the filmmakers themselves.  This different perspective is visible in the documentary: It is not a professional film crew filming a broken refugee boat from a safe guard boat. The camera is in the hand of a refugee on a broken boat when suddenly a boat is approaching to rescue them. The camera is also inside an empty trunk, searching for a small hole, for air or hidden while filming traffickers who take the decision on the future of the person, who is filming. It is “my escape” not “their escape.”

SNTV (Somalia) November 8th10h00 & 14h00 (GMT+3)

Revenir (To Return) | David Fedele & Kumut Imesh | 2018 | 78 min

REVENIR is a collaboration between the filmmaker and Kumut Imesh, a political refugee from the Ivory Coast in West Africa, currently living in France. Part road-trip, part memoir, part journalistic investigation, this film follows Kumut as he returns to the African continent and attempts to retrace the same journey that he himself took more than ten years ago when forced to flee civil war in his country …. But this time with a camera in his hand.

Kana TV (Ethiopia) December 1st19h00, December 2nd15h00, December 4th11h00 (GMT+3)

Life TV (West Africa) November 8th23h00 (GMT+2)

Days of Hope | Dittte Haarløv Johnsens | Global | 2014 | 55 min

Three immigrant stories interlace to offer a portrait of the brave souls who leave Africa for Europe but who always stay connected with home. We rarely see immigrants on the move as humans. Do they have lives separate from the process of immigration? But in fact in a globalised, connected world immigrants are as we are. As the narrative unfolds we learn that each of the three characters has motivations very similar to those that drive us.

LIfeTV (West Africa) November 15th23h00 (GMT+2)

SNTV (Somalia) November 12th11h30, 18h00, November 15th10h00, 16h00 (GMT+2)

When Paul Came Over the Sea | Jakob Preuss | Germany | 2017 | 97 min

Paul has made his way from his home in Cameroon across the Sahara to the Moroccan coast where he now lives in a forest waiting for the right moment to cross the Mediterranean. This is where he meets Jakob, a filmmaker from Berlin, who is filming along Europe’s borders. Soon afterwards, Paul manages to cross over to Spain on a rubber boat. He survives – but half of his companions die on this tragic 50-hour odyssey. When Paul decides to continue on to Germany, Jakob has to make a choice: will he become an active part of Paul’s pursuit of a better life or remain a detached documentary filmmaker?

Life TV (West Africa) November 22nd23h00 (GMT+2)

Kana TV (Ethiopia) December 15th19h00, December 16th15h00, December 18th11h00 (GMT+3)

Those Who Jump | Moritz Sebert | Morocco, Spain | 2016 | 80 min

In northern Morocco lies the Spanish enclave of Melilla: Europe on African land. On the mountain above, live more than a thousand hopeful African migrants, watching the fence separating Morocco and Spain. Abou from Mali is one of them – the protagonist in front of the camera, as well as the person behind it. At the fence, they have to overcome the razor-wire, automatic pepper spray and brutal authorities. After every failed attempt, they return to Mount Gurugú, scouring for food in the nearby villages, trying to uphold some sort of order in the camp, and building up their confidence again.

Life TV (West Africa) November 29th23h00 (GMT+2)

Kana TV (Ethiopia) December 8th19h00, December 9th15h00, December 11th11h00 (GMT+3)

Aji Bi, Under the Clock Tower | Raja Saddiki | Morocco | 2016 | 66 min

The film follows the small community of Senegalese women who are living and working in Casablanca, in limbo between “regularisation” in Morocco, or attempting to “cross” to Europe. With humour and sensitivity, the film documents their daily life, as well as their struggles – trying to organise themselves and survive in a Moroccan society that is at the same time generous and hostile.

Kana TV (Ethiopia) November 24th19h00, November 25th15h00, November 27th11h00 (GMT+3)