Giving Shelter in Colombia from Stranger Collective on Vimeo.
In June 2010 I completed my training as a Shelterbox Response Team (SRT) member, ready to help deliver emergency shelter to people affected by natural and manmade disasters worldwide.
My first deployment was to northern Colombia over Christmas that year (just after we’d finished our first Shelterbox illustrated Christmas cards campaign – so it was great to see first-hand how the money we’d helped raise was being spent).
Around 1.9 million people had been affected by some of the worst floods in the country’s history, with a “state of catastrophe” declared, 28 out of 32 departments affected, over 400,000 homes destroyed and some places under up to 9m of water.
Working with a group of Shelterbox SRTs, the local people and Colombia’s national disaster agency, I was there to help distribute aid and get the families in most need into Shelterbox tents.
I was not there to make a film. I’m certainly not a filmmaker. I wrote a couple of press stories but essentially my job was hands-on, helping with logistics and helping put up tents. But I did take my Flip pocket camera and shot some footage here and there, when I could and when it didn’t get in the way of anything more pressing.
This film is a flavour of my Colombia experience, pieced together by someone still getting her head around editing in Final Cut Pro (it’s spring 2012 and I’ve only just got round to editing it!). There are some obvious gaps and I can’t say it’s very accomplished. But I can say I’ve loved doing it – combining my passions for telling stories and capturing images. Hopefully this is the first of many and hopefully they’ll get better!
Huge thanks to Morgan Lowndes for the FCP help and patience as I found my way around the editing process.
If you’d like to find out more about Shelterbox’s work or donate, go to www.shelterbox.org