Distributor:  Bullfrog Films
Length:  82 minutes
Date:  2006
Genre:  Expository
Language:  English
Grade level: 7 - 12, College, Adult
Color/BW:  Color
Closed captioning available
Interactive transcript available
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Rain in a Dry Land

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Two Somali Bantu families leave behind a legacy of slavery in Africa and find new homes in urban America.

Rain in a Dry Land

In 2004, thirteen thousand Somali Bantu refugees realized their dream of coming to America. They are now living in fifty cities across the country, becoming the largest African group from a single minority to settle in the United States at one time.

RAIN IN A DRY LAND chronicles two years in the lives of two extended Somali Bantu families as they leave behind a two-hundred year legacy of oppression in Africa to face new challenges in a strange new land. The film begins in January, 2004, at the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya, where our featured families are stunned by what they learn about America in their 'Cultural Orientation' class: refrigerators, stoves, bathtubs, elevators, stairs, buildings taller than one storey, schools, and all the things we take for granted in modern life. As their awe and excitement grow, the audience fears for them. How will these illiterate Muslim farmers who speak no English manage to survive in America?

These opening scenes in Kakuma introduce our featured families, both dynamic, charismatic, and very different in nature. Arbai is quick, strong, affectionate, a single mother of four with a great sense of humor and an easy contagious laugh, despite her devastating past.

Madina is fierce, vulnerable, wounded, strong; her husband Aden is volatile, moody, soulful, determined to provide for his huge family but uncertain and a bit naive about the life that lies ahead. Their witty, resourceful teenage sons, Ali (17) and Warsame (15), figure prominently in the film, as do Arbai's beautiful teenage daughters, Sahara (13) and Khadija (16).

The documentary follows these two families to America and through their first two years in their new homes. Aden and Madina, sponsored by Jewish Family Service, settle in the grim mill-town of Springfield, Massachusetts; while Arbai's family settles in Atlanta.

Despite racism, poverty, failures of the school system, and severe culture shock, both families do find ways to survive in America, and to create a safe haven for their war-torn families. The film ends with two vivid celebrations: the naming ceremony of Aden and Madina's first American-born child; and the traditional wedding of Arbai's oldest daughter, a colorful reunion of hundreds of Somali Bantu families converging on Atlanta from all over America.

'Rigorously intimate and disarmingly affectionate...In following two subject families in their transition from Somalian refugee camp to underclass America, filmmaker Anne Makepeace never reduces them to devices or symbols or anything less than human beings caught in the cross-hairs of global politics. The film's honesty and grit should give it wide appeal...Gorgeously, purposefully shot...One noteworthy aspect is that Makepeace's movie never fails to be cinematic regardless of how free-form the director is forced to be, or how difficult the circumstances of a given scene; it almost feels that the film is blessed...a compassionate telling of what is often a heartbreaking story.' John Anderson, Variety

'With immigration on the American radar, director Anne Makepeace's documentary Rain In A Dry Land reminds audiences that immigrants come from countries other than Mexico and that their transitions can be hard, but ultimately victorious on some level.' John E. Mitchell, North Adams Transcript

'[A film] you'll kick yourself for missing...The way the camera passively observes the rough transition is unsettling...but underscores the way in which promises of aid and a better life can be difficult to deliver.' Missoula Independent

'Fascinating...Compassionately yet faithfully tendered...Makepeace's camera seemingly becomes just another family member and captures the range of events from the joyousness of a wedding to the frustration of everyday societal problems, not unlike those faced by all families around the world.' Dwain Thomas, Lake Park High School, School Library Journal

'The particular strength of this film is its intimacy, its insistence on portraying immigrants as complicated, high-strung people negotiating the personal boundaries between their traditions and western modernity.' New York Times

'Rain in a Dry Land paints an intimate portrait of the lives of the 'American Bantu', revealing their beauty and resilience without condescension, and illustrating the special care new refugees need with clarity and compassion.' East African Standard

'What distiguishes this film is its rich characters, combined with a mixture of poignancy and humor...Rain In A Dry Land may tell a familiar story, but it stands out in a crowded field. Recommended.' Video Librarian

'A wrenching story of two Somali families trying to make a new life in America after 13 years in a Kenyan refugee camp unfolds with blunt honesty...it is an eye-opener.' Catholic News Service

'[Rain in a Dry Land] involves you so quickly that before you know it you care deeply about the people whose ordeals are being told...by truly letting us experience the immigrant journey.' New York Daily News

' Rain in a Dry Land was wonderfully provocative; it enriched and expanded the types of conversations that our faculty teams were having...I expect that many of the faculty members in attendance will include your film in future courses.' Kevin Hovland, Director, Global Learning and Curricular Change, Association of American Colleges and Universities

'A revelation. The movie is full of beauty,...poetry and song, and even an uplifting ending. You couldn't invent a more perfect tale of triumph over hardship.' The Lakeville Journal

'Rain in a Dry Land should result in a very lively discussion, probably with varying opinions expressed!...While some of the issues are the universal issues of families torn out of one culture and thrown into another, the needs specific to social work merit analysis and answers since there is hardly anywhere in America that is not experiencing immigrants and refugees. This is an effective teaching tool to use with social work students in the curricular areas of human behavior and social environment and social work practice where it can highlight culture, interpersonal relations and family dynamics. Rain in a Dry Land poses many questions for social work, answers some, and in a moving way, creates some of the same frustrations these families felt in their struggle for survival.' Louise P. Shoemaker, Professor and Dean Emerita, School of Social Work, University of Pennsylvania

'The film's unwavering eye captures the deep discomfort that is felt by both the newly arrived refugees and by the Americans who have come face-to-face with cultural issues they cannot comprehend. We intended to use this documentary as an internal training tool, but its content and message have proven to be so valuable that this film is now required viewing in all of our volunteer-training sessions. We have yet to find another film that tells the story of refugee resettlement so completely or with such compassion for its subjects. It is, in a word, extraordinary.' Sharon McCreary, Volunteer Coordinator, Colorado Refugee ESL Program, Director, Denver Refugee Women's Crafts Initiative

'The contrasting focus on Madina and Arbai underscores the importance of matriarchal society in Somali culture as both mothers learn to negotiate their new complex, urban and often confusing surroundings with great resiliency and equanimity. This film has strong educational value for students in helping professions by exposing them to the full continuum of migrant experiences, from preparation and departure from one's country of origin to arrival and integration into one's new country of residence.' Dr. Kristin M. Ferguson, School of Social Work, University of Southern California

'I was struck by the stories of both of these two families, and the suffering that was the context and circumstance of their lives in Africa. But the film successfully captured both women's personal response to their tragic circumstances and demonstrated very well how each struggled to get beyond the grief and loss and build something new and hopeful for their present and future lives...I am reaffirmed in my commitment to the refugee resettlement program by viewing this film; I am energized to push for a renewed national resolve to strengthen the refugee programs in the U.S. and worldwide; and I'm uplifted by the courage and persistence of Medina and Arbai who have overcome incredible odds to maintain their human spirit and dignity!' Dr. Michael McKay, Director of Refugee Services, Catholic Charities Diocese of San Diego

'Truly phenomenal...This remarkable and important film should be seen and discussed by all those who work with or encounter Somali Bantu refugees, especially educators, students, community leaders, and the staff and volunteers from agencies or community organizations. It should also be viewed by anyone hoping to understand the refugee experience, and the challenges faced by newcomers to the United States of America.' Wayne E. Wright, PhD, Bicultural-Bilingual Studies, College of Education and Human Development, University of Texas, San Antonio


Awards

Nationwide Broadcast on PBS's 'P.O.V.'
Chris Award, Columbus International Film and Video Festival
Working Films Award, Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
Award of Excellence, Society for Visual Anthropology, American Anthropological Association
Gold Plaque, HUGO Television Awards, Chicago International Film Festival
Best Documentary, Sonoma Valley Film Festival
Showcase Screening, Columbus International Film and Video Festival
Human Rights Watch International Film Festival
Best of Festival, Fire Island Film Festival
Margaret Mead Film Festival
Vancouver International Film Festival
'Stories from the Field' United Nations Documentary Film Festival
Santa Barbara International Film Festival
Atlanta Film Festival
Denver International Film Festival
Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival
Environmental Film Festival


Madina (VO) - SUBTITLE
I came of age just before the war.

Madina (VO) - SUBTITLE
It was a season of abundant water

Madina (VO) - SUBTITLE
and it was a peaceful time.

Aden (VO) - SUBTITLE
We were farmers in Somalia.

Aden (VO) - SUBTITLE
Just tilling, farming the land.

Madina (VO) - SUBTITLE
Our fields were green

Madina (VO) - SUBTITLE
and there was no robbing or killing.

TITLE
MADINA

Madina (VO) - SUBTITLE
It was a little before dawn
when the gunmen came.

Madina - SUBTITLE
I heard gunshots.

Madina - SUBTITLE
I looked over the wall

Madina - SUBTITLE
and saw my mother shot.

Aden - SUBTITLE
My wife and I got separated

Aden (OS) - SUBTITLE
when her mother and
the others were killed.

Aden (OS) - SUBTITLE
People fled in different directions.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Our children were crying
inside the house.

Madina - SUBTITLE
I sneaked back inside to get them,

Madina - SUBTITLE
thinking the gunmen had left.

Madina - SUBTITLE
It was too late when I saw
that they were still there.

Madina (OS) - SUBTITLE
My little boys were clinging to me.

Madina (OS) - SUBTITLE
Three men raped me

Madina (OS) - SUBTITLE
while two stood guard and watched.

Madina (OS) – SUBTITLE
When they were done with me,

Madina – SUBTITLE
I grabbed my children and ran.

Madina (VO) - SUBTITLE
People were scattering like the sand.

Madina (VO) - SUBTITLE
I joined the exodus and
never looked back.

TITLE
In 1991, Civil War
broke out in Somalia.

The Somali Bantu, many of
them descendents of slaves,
were attacked without mercy.

TITLE
Thousands of Bantu families
fled from the violence in Somalia
across the border into Kenya.

TITLE
For thirteen years,
they have made a life in
United Nations refugee camps
in Kenya.

TITLE
The U.S. is now resettling more
than 13,000 Somali Bantu refugees
in cities all across America.

This is the story of
two of those families.

TITLE
RAIN IN A DRY LAND

TITLE
KAKUMA REFUGEE CAMP
Kenya, January 2004

Narrator (TV)
THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, A LAND OF DIVERSE REGIONS AND CHANGING CLIMATES, MADE UP OF PEOPLE WITH DIFFERENT ETHNIC AND RACIAL BACKGROUNDS, YET WE ARE ONE NATION.  ONE NATION OF AMERICANS.  THROUGHOUT HISTORY, AMERICA HAS OPENED ITS DOORS TO PEOPLE FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD, WHO RISKED EVERYTHING THEY HAD FOR THE CHANCE TO PURSUE HAPPINESS AND FREEDOM.  WELCOME TO AMERICA.  THE ROAD AHEAD OF YOU HOLDS MANY OPPORTUNITIES, BUT ONLY YOU CAN TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THEM.  THIS CONCLUDES PART ONE OF THIS VIDEO.

Man in Class – SUBTITLE
That looked beautiful.

Kassim - SUBTITLE
Are those things in Kakuma?

Man in Class – SUBTITLE
No.

Woman in Back of Class – SUBTITLE
We felt like we were
already on the plane.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
It’s like a fantasy.

Kassim (OS) – SUBTITLE
Do you think you’ll live that
kind of life in America?

Man in Corner of Class (OS) – SUBTITLE
Yes, if it is written, we will go.

Man in Corner of Class – SUBTITLE
If not, we’ll be stuck here
eating yellow gruel.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
If we go to America
it will be Allah’s will.

TITLE
ARBAI

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
Before the war, we had a good life.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I was 13 when I got married.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
My husband was 18.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I was preparing breakfast

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
when I first saw the men.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I had just taken the
mangos from the fire,

Arbai – SUBTITLE
when seven gunmen burst in.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
They demanded everything we had.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
Then they tied up my parents.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
They beat them senseless
and then they shot them.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
My husband jumped over
the fence and ran.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I grabbed these two

Arbai – SUBTITLE
and ran with them.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
Khadija was on my back

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
and Sahara was on my neck.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I found my husband again
in the refugee camp.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
The little ones were
born in the camp.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I was pregnant again when my
husband came to me and said

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
he was tired of this hard life.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
He would leave and go
wherever God takes him.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I asked him to stay.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I told him it was a miracle
that we were together.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
He said he wouldn’t stay,

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
his hands were bruised,
his back was aching,

Arbai – SUBTITLE
his feet hurt and he couldn’t walk.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
He left me then.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I don’t know where he is.

TITLE
ADEN
Madina’s husband

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
In Somalia, we Bantu were
not allowed to go to school.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
We were treated like
beasts of burden.

Aden – SUBTITLE
We are illiterate because of the
subjugation we suffered in Somalia,

Aden – SUBTITLE
the torture and discrimination.

Aden – SUBTITLE
We couldn’t even
open our eyes there.

Aden (OS) – SUBTITLE
But here we are free,
despite the heat and the hunger.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
If Allah permits us to go to America,
we will focus on our education.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
I hope for the best for
my children in America.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
I know they will change a lot.

TITLE
ALI
17 years old

Ali – SUBTITLE
I don’t remember Somalia at all.

Ali (VO) – SUBTITLE
In America, I want to study hard,

Ali (VO) – SUBTITLE
and also get a job, if I can do both.

Ali – SUBTITLE
I want to be a doctor in America
if I can finish my studies.

Kassim – SUBTITLE
How many of you can write
your names or count 1, 2, 3?

Kassim – SUBTITLE
Raise your hands if you can.

Kassim (OS) – SUBTITLE
You will not be punished
for things you don’t know.

Kassim (OS) – SUBTITLE
Don’t be afraid.

Kassim (OS) – SUBTITLE
Please tell me your name.

Madina
MADINA ALI YUNYE.

Kassim
MADINA…

Madina
ALI…

Kassim
ALI…

Madina
YUNYE.

Kassim
YUNYE.

Kassim – SUBTITLE
Please write Madina on the board.

Kassim – SUBTITLE
I think you are wonderful.
You are doing very well.

TITLE
ADEN

TITLE
FOOD DISTRIBUTION CENTER
Kakuma Refugee Camp, Kenya

Aden (OS) – SUBTITLE
Wait, wait, wait, sister.

Aden – SUBTITLE
Careful don’t rip the bag.

Angry Woman – SUBTITLE
That scale is worthless.

Food worker – SUBTITLE
Cool off, cool off.

Angry Woman – SUBTITLE
I’m not asking for anything extra,
I just want my share.

Angry Woman – SUBTITLE
Not Kakuma’s leftovers.

Angry Woman - WITH SUBTITLE
BULLSHIT!
Bullshit!

TITLE
ARBAI

Arbai – SUBTITLE
At food distribution I got
maize, beans, oil and salt.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I sell some of my rations
to buy other necessities.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
How else could I get a shilling?

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
How much?

Merchant (OS) – SUBTITLE
35 shillings.

Teacher in Kakuma 1 (VO)
WHERE DO WE GO?

Class (VO)
WHERE DO WE GO?

Teacher in Kakuma 1 (OS)
WE SHALL GO...

Class (OS)
WE SHALL GO...

Teacher in Kakuma 1 (OS)
TO THE SUPERMARKET.

Class (OS)
TO THE SUPERMARKET.

Teacher in Kakuma 1
WHERE...

Class (OS)
WHERE...

Teacher in Kakuma 1
DO...

Class (OS)
DO...

Teacher in Kakuma 1
WE...

Class (OS)
WE...

Teacher in Kakuma 1
GO?

Class (OS)
GO?

Aden
I SHALL GO TO SUPERMARKET.

Teacher in Kakuma 1 (OS)
AH, VERY GOOD.

Teacher in Kakuma 2 (OS)
YOU DIAL 9-1-1.

Teacher in Kakuma 2
WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?  WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?

Teacher in Kakuma 2 (OS)
9-1-1.

Teacher in Kakuma 2
WHAT’S THE PROBLEM?

Woman
THERE IS A FIRE.

Kassim – WITH SUBTITLE
HUNDRED DOLLARS.  WHO HAVE SEEN BEFORE?
Who has seen one hundred dollars?

Kassim
ONE-HUNDRED FIFTEEN...

TITLE
MADINA

TITLE
ARBAI

Arbai
SIXTY-FIVE, AND ELEVEN…

Kassim
...APARTMENTS, HIGH-RISE BUILDINGS.  APARTMENT BUILDINGS.

Kassim (OS) – SUBTITLE
You might live on the 30th floor.

Kassim (OS) – SUBTITLE
If I want to have sex with
my wife and she refuses,

Kassim – SUBTITLE
so then I force her,

Kassim (OS) – SUBTITLE
would that be rape?

Man in class 1 – SUBTITLE
No.

Man in class 2 – SUBTITLE
No.

Man in class 3 – SUBTITLE
No.

Man in class 4 – SUBTITLE
No.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Yes, anything that is forced is rape.

Woman in class 1 – SUBTITLE
Yes, if she’s not willing.

Woman in class 2 – SUBTITLE
Yes, it’s rape.

Woman in class 3 – SUBTITLE
Yes.

Kassim - SUBTITLE
In America, all forced sex is rape.

Kassim (OS) – SUBTITLE
If you beat your children,

Kassim – SUBTITLE
they might be taken away from you.

Young English teacher in Kakuma
WHERE’S MY PEN?

Class (OS)
IT IS IN THE CUP.

Young English teacher in Kakuma
WHERE’S MY PEN?

Khadija (WITH CLASS)
IT IS ON THE TABLE.

Young English teacher in Kakuma (OS)
WHERE’S MY PEN?

Arbai (WITH CLASS)
IT IS ON THE TABLE.

Kassim – SUBTITLE
When the plane takes off

Kassim – SUBTITLE
it will move diagonally.

Kassim – SUBTITLE
Then it will level off.

Kassim (OS) – SUBTITLE
When you look down, you will see
deep layers of clouds like foam.

Man leading song (VO)
WHEN I GO TO AMERICA….

African children singing (VO) – WITH SUBTITLE
WHEN I GO TO AMERICA...
When I go to America

Man leading song (VO) – WITH SUBTITLE
SEE MY SHIRT...
See my shirt

African children singing (VO)
SEE MY SHIRT...

Man leading song (VO) – WITH SUBTITLE
IT WAS TORN.
it was torn.

African children singing (VO)
IT WAS TORN.

Man leading song (VO) – WITH SUBTITLE
WALKING DAY...
Walking day

African children singing (VO)
WALKING DAY...

Man leading song (VO) – WITH SUBTITLE
DAY AND NIGHT.
day and night.

Man leading song (VO)
I WANT TEA AND SUGAR...

African children singing (VO)
I WANT TEA AND SUGAR...

Man leading song (VO)
SUGAR AND TEA.  WHEN I GO TO AMERICA.

African children singing (VO)
WHEN I GO TO AMERICA.

TITLE
Every week, several hundred
Somali Bantu leave
for America.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
We just heard that we’re
leaving on Friday.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
We are finally on
our way to America.

Aden – SUBTITLE
We are very happy.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
The party we’re giving is for
the people we are leaving behind,

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
our Bantu friends,

Aden (VO) - SUBTITLE
who fled Somalia with us
and shared this refugee life.

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
If God permits me to get
to America peacefully,

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
and my eyes and ears arrive in a
place where the breeze is blowing,

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
I will learn how to live there,
how to take my children to school.

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
I hope that I can heal myself

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
and find peace of mind in America.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
Only God knows how we survived.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
But we are human beings,

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
we make a home wherever we are.

Ali – SUBTITLE
Don’t look outside, you’ll
be confused by the wind.

TITLE
Thirty hours later

Madina – SUBTITLE
Are those rocks down there?

Aden – SUBTITLE
No, it’s ice.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Is it ice or rocks?

Aden – SUBTITLE
It’s ice that falls from the sky.

TITLE
NEWARK AIRPORT

Airline Stewardess (VO)
ON BEHALF OF THE CAPTAIN AND ALL OF THE CREW, WE WISH YOU A PLEASANT STAY.  THANK YOU, AND A VERY GOOD AFTERNOON TO YOU ALL.

TITLE
Aden, Madina and their
seven children are on their way
to Springfield, MA.

Aden (OS) – SUBTITLE
Just put your foot there.

Ali
IT’S VERY COLD.

Barney (OS)
YOU WANT MY SWEATER?

Ali – SUBTITLE
You’re smoking without a cigarette.

Abdi – SUBTITLE
Dad, look at that plane way up there!

Abdi – SUBTITLE
Faaaaar away.

Aden (OS) – SUBTITLE
You see those bare trees?

Aden – SUBTITLE
The ice did that to them.

Ali
SPRINGFIELD.

Warsame
SPRINGFIELD.

Ali
SPRINGFIELD.

Aden Aden (OS)
THAT’S THE HOUSE OVER THERE, NEXT TO THE CHURCH.

TITLE
Jewish Family Service
is sponsoring the family.

JFS will provide financial support
and transitional assistance
for the first six months.

TITLE
MOHAMUD MIRE MOHAMED
New American Program Coordinator, JFS

Mohamud (OS) – SUBTITLE
Aden, I’ll take you to the
mosque tomorrow.

Aden – SUBTITLE
God is great

Aden – SUBTITLE
but I forgot my prayer rug.

Mohamud – SUBTITLE
You can buy a new one.

Aden – SUBTITLE
Oh my God, can you find
one here, my brother?

Mohamud – SUBTITLE
You can even find prayer beads.

Mohamud – SUBTITLE
Here’s the trash can.

Aden – SUBTITLE
I learned about that in
Cultural Orientation.

Raya
LOOK AT THIS.

TITLE
RAYA KATSEN
Caseworker, Jewish Family Service

Raya
THIS IS… GO LIKE THIS, AND YOU WASH THE DISHES.

Aden – SUBTITLE
She needs to show Madina, too.

Raya
YOU WILL TEACH YOUR WIFE, YOU WILL TEACH YOUR WIFE.

Aden the caseworker
NO, HE SAID, LET US STICK TOGETHER…

Bantu in green – SUBTITLE
Aden, we’ve been waiting for you for
weeks, ever since we left Kakuma.

Bantu in blue – SUBTITLE
Aden, seeing you again is like
seeing the first moon after Ramadan.

Bantu in blue – SUBTITLE
Everyone follows
the person ahead of him.

Bantu in blue – SUBTITLE
Aden, follow us.

Aden (OS) – SUBTITLE
You will be my goat.

Aden – SUBTITLE
The goats are the eyes of the sheep.

Aden – SUBTITLE
If someone arrives even
one day ahead of you

Aden – SUBTITLE
they become your eyes and ears.

Bantu in blue – SUBTITLE
We are all brothers.
We should watch out for each other.

Warsame
DIFFERENT.  IT’S AFRICA.

Aden
AFRICA.

TITLE
KAKUMA REFUGEE CAMP
Kenya

TITLE
Arbai’s family

Mukhtar (OS) – SUBTITLE
Are you all ready to go?

Mukhtar (OS) – SUBTITLE
Are you excited?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Speak up! Open wide like
when you eat porridge.

Mukhtar (OS) – SUBTITLE
Do you know where you are going?

Sahara
YES.

Anne Makepeace
YOU SPEAK ENGLISH, HUH?

Sahara
NO.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
Say Atlanta.

Said
ATLANTA.

TITLE
ATLANTA AIRPORT

Airport Shuttle PA
PLEASE HOLD ON, THIS TRAIN IS DEPARTING.

TITLE
Arbai and her four children
arrive in Atlanta, GA.

Airport Shuttle PA
THE NEXT STATION IS CONCOURSE C.  PLEASE HOLD ON, THIS TRAIN IS DEPARTING.

Mike Hoffer
CAN YOU TELL THEM, UH, THERE ARE MANY PEOPLE WHO ARE WAITING FOR THEM.

TITLE
MIKE HOFFER
Caseworker, World Relief

Mike Hoffer
THEY ARE VERY HAPPY THAT THEY’RE HERE.  THEY’VE BEEN PLANNING FOR THEM TO COME SINCE DECEMBER.

Airport Shuttle PA
CONCOURSE D.  CONCOURSE D.  THE NEXT STATION IS CONCOURSE B.  CONCOURSE B.

Arbai (OS)
SAID!  SAID!

Mike Hoffer (OS)
THEY’RE GOING TO STAY WITH THE AMERICAN FAMILY FOR ABOUT A WEEK…

TITLE
World Relief is sponsoring
Arbai’s family.

Mike Hoffer (OS)
…AND THEN WE’RE GOING TO PUT THEM IN THEIR OWN APARTMENT, TEACH THEM ENGLISH, AND GET THEM JOBS EVENTUALLY, SO.

Christian man (OS)
THAT’LL BE GREAT.  

Christopher (OS)
THERE THEY ARE.

Christian man (OS)
OUR WIVES ARE HERE.

Christopher (OS)
PERFECT!

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Just go through this way.

Khadija – SUBTITLE
Who are those people?

Christian man (OS)
THIS IS CHRISTINA…

Arbai (OS)
CHRISTINA.

Anab (OS)
CHRISTINA.

Christian man (OS)
AND THIS IS CHRISTOPHER.  

Arbai
OKAY.

Christian man (OS)
WE ARE VERY GLAD THAT YOU ARE HERE.  THEY ARE GOING TO HELP YOU LEARN SOME THINGS HERE IN AMERICA TO PREPARE YOU…

Christian man
FOR LIVING IN YOUR OWN HOUSE, YOUR OWN APARTMENT.

Christian man (OS)
THERE IS ONE MEMBER OF THE FAMILY THAT IS NOT IN THE ROOM RIGHT NOW.

Christian man
BUT YOU WILL MEET, HER RIGHT?  HER VERY SOON.

Anab (OS)
They have a dog.

Christian man (OS)
WILL YOUR CHILDREN BE AFRAID OF HER?

Arbai
Yes, the children will
be afraid of the dog

Anab (OS)
YES, THE KIDS…
Arbai
until they get used to it.

Anab (OS)
BUT THEY’LL LEARN.  THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID.

Christina
TURN ON THE LIGHT, TURN ON THE HALL LIGHT.

Christopher
COPPER, SIT.  SIT.  GOOD GIRL.  NO.  IT’S OKAY.  IT’S OKAY.  GOOD GIRL.  COME HERE.  COME HERE.  SHE’S OKAY.  COPPER, YOU SIT.  SIT.

Christina
SIT.

Christopher
SIT.

Christina
YOU CAN COME PET HER.

Christian woman (OS)
HER FEET ARE WET AND MUDDY.

Christopher
THAT’S OKAY.

Christina
IF YOU WANT TO, YOU CAN.

Christopher
THERE YOU GO.  THERE YOU GO.

Christina
THERE.  YES.

Christopher
YEAH, ALL RIGHT.

Christina
DO YOU WANT TO COME HERE?

Anab (OS)
THEY ARE NOT ALLOWED TO TOUCH HIM.

Christopher (OS)
OH, THEY’RE NOT ALLOWED TO TOUCH HIM?  OKAY.

Christina
OH, THEY’RE NOT ALLOWED TO TOUCH DOGS.  OKAY.

Christina
SHE’S GOING TO BE STUFFED.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
We all overslept.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Last night was the first
time we slept in beds.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
So that’s why the sun came up
before we woke up.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
The children didn’t
want to sleep alone.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
They all wanted to stay with me.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Put down that banana.
You can’t eat more than that.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Hello, Aden. This is Arbai.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Where are you?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Springfield? Where’s that?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Are you already settled
in your new home?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
We are staying with
some white people.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
We will go to our own
place in seven days.

TITLE
KHADIJA
17 years old

TITLE
SAHARA
13 years old

Arbai – SUBTITLE
You’re like a cloud that’s
heavy with water

Arbai – SUBTITLE
that I long for.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
You’re the ideal person

Arbai – SUBTITLE
and I adore you.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
You are my medicine.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I’m trying to forget you

Arbai – SUBTITLE
because you’re not keeping me warm.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
You can go

Arbai – SUBTITLE
swim off with your love.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Swim off with your love.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I am also tired of waiting
for my husband.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
He never shows up.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
I’m tired of waiting for you.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Either tell me to get lost

Arbai – SUBTITLE
or be with me.

Arbai and daughters – SUBTITLE
You can go

Arbai and daughters – SUBTITLE
swim off with your love.

Arbai and daughters – SUBTITLE
Swim off with your love.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
If God gives me more kids

Arbai – SUBTITLE
why wouldn’t I want them?

Anab
SHE’S JUST TELLING ME SHE HAD NINE KIDS.

Anne Makepeace (OS)
SHE HAD NINE KIDS?

Anab (OS)
ONE IS OLDER THAN JIIJA, AND ONE IS OLDER THAN SAHARA.  THE REST DIED WHEN THEY WERE BABIES.

Christina
HOW COME THEY DIDN’T COME WITH THEM?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
We got separated when
the war came to our home.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Home, home, home.

Arbai (OS)– SUBTITLE
That day, when my
parents were killed.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
We started running and
they ran away on their own.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I thought we were all together

Arbai - SUBTITLE
but then I discovered
they weren’t with us.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
It was too dangerous
for me to go back.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Bullets were flying everywhere.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
I was afraid of losing the
two children I was carrying.

Anab (OS) – SUBTITLE
What are their names?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
My eldest is Ruqiya Mohammed Ahmed

Arbai – SUBTITLE
and Hawa Mohammed Ahmed.

Anab – SUBTITLE
How old was Ruqiya when you fled?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
She was very young.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
She was seven.

Anab (OS) – SUBTITLE
I hope you find your children.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
May God help me.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Think I can reach this?

Mainun – SUBTITLE
Now the other one.

Mainun – SUBTITLE
I have your scarf.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
You do?

Mainun – SUBTITLE
Yes.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I’m ready.

Mainun (OS) – SUBTITLE
Are you praying now?

TITLE
SPRINGFIELD

One month in America

TITLE
Aden and Madina’s
new house

TITLE
MADINA

Madina – SUBTITLE
The kitchen.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Warsame’s room.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Ali’s over there.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Ali here,

Madina (OS) – SUBTITLE
Hassan.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Ali school.

TITLE
WARSAME
15 years old

Girl at locker
GO PAST FOURTEEN ONCE.  GO BACK TO FOURTEEN.  FOURTEEN.

TITLE
ALI
17 years old

Girl at locker
IT OPENED, BUT...

Maria
MY NAME IS MARIA, AND I’M FROM DOMINICAN REPUBLIC.  I’VE BEEN HERE FOR FIVE YEARS.

Thong
MY NAME IS THONG, I’M FROM VIETNAM, AND I HAVE BEEN IN AMERICA SIX MONTHS, BUT RIGHT NOW I’M LEARNING ENGLISH.  AND IT FEELS SO HAPPY WHEN I GET SOME FRIENDS.

Warsame – WITH SUBTITLES
I’M WARSAME ADEN KABIR...
I’m Warsame Aden Kabir

FROM SOMALIA...
from Somalia

AND KAKUMA.
and Kakuma.

TITLE
HASSAN
7 years old

Abdi’s first teacher (OS)
OKAY, UM, KATIA, DESIREE, ABDI, WE HAVE TO RETURN TO OUR SEATS.

TITLE
ABDI
10 years old

Girl bugging Abdi 1
COME ON.  COME ON.

Abdi – SUBTITLE
MOVE.
Move.

Girl bugging Abdi 1
HE SAID MOVE.  HELLO.

Girl bugging Abdi 2
HOW ARE YOU?

Girl bugging Abdi 1
HOW ARE YOU, ABDI?

Abdi
I’M FINE.

Girl bugging Abdi 1
WANT TO GO TO LUNCH?

Friend of Hassan 1
HASSAN, HASSAN.  YOU WANT THIS?

Friend of Hassan 2 (OS)
HE’S NASTY.

Friend of Hassan 1
HE AIN’T NASTY.

Friend of Hassan 2
SOMETIMES HE IS.

Friend of Hassan 1
NUH-UH.

Friend of Hassan 2
AND HE COPIES US.

Friend of Hassan 3 (OS)
AND HE’S MY BEST FRIEND.

Friend of Hassan 3
HASSAN IS MY BEST FRIEND.  AND I HELP HIM DO HOMEWORK.

Friend of Hassan 3 (OS) – WITH SUBTITLE
BYE, BEST FRIEND.
Bye, best friend.

Madina – SUBTITLE
This is beyond cold.

Madina – SUBTITLE
I’m freezing.

Hassan – SUBTITLE
We’ll just put it in the oven.
It will be sweet.

Hassan – SUBTITLE
Then everyone will
have a plate of it

Hassan – SUBTITLE
and then we will eat it.

Taco Bell employee (OS)
CAN I HELP YOU?

Abdi
CHICKEN.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Just tell her to give us
a round chicken.

Abdi – SUBTITLE
They only have small chicken.

Madina – SUBTITLE
They’re waiting. Order.

Taco Bell employee (OS)
WE HAVE CHICKEN TACOS, WHAT DO THEY WANT?

Abdi
CHICKEN.

Taco Bell employee (OS)
IS THAT IT?

Abdi (OS)
YEAH.

Taco Bell employee
THAT’S A DOLLAR FIFTY-SIX.

Abdi – SUBTITLE
Come and pay.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Pay without seeing it?

Abdi – SUBTITLE
Say “show me.”

Madina – SUBTITLE
Who should I pay?

Abdi – SUBTITLE
Wait until she brings it.

Taco Bell employee
THIS IS WHAT IT IS.  THAT’S WHAT WE HAVE FOR CHICKEN.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Let’s go.

Madina – SUBTITLE
What if the chicken
there is the same?

Madina – SUBTITLE
HASSAN, HASSAN!
Hassan, Hassan!

Madina – SUBTITLE
I dare you to go in without me.

Hassan – SUBTITLE
Where are we going to roast it?

Supermarket PA
JEN TO THE FRONT, PLEASE.  JEN TO THE FRONT.

Hassan – SUBTITLE
Mom, please buy this for us.

Hassan – SUBTITLE
Mom? Mom?

Madina – SUBTITLE
Take this back.

Hassan (OS) – SUBTITLE
Mom, can we take this home?

Madina – SUBTITLE
Is this what you said you wanted?

Abdi – SUBTITLE
No, it’s not that kind.

Abdi – SUBTITLE
Hassan picked that one.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Oh, God, why did I ever
come with you two?

Madina – SUBTITLE
How do you know this is a chicken?

Abdi – SUBTITLE
It’s all chicken right here.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Why is it so cold?

Madina – SUBTITLE
What they call chicken
might as well be maize.

Madina – SUBTITLE
What’s on it?

TITLE
ADEN

Mohamud (VO)
SOMALI BANTUS ARE THE REFUGEE GROUP WHO CAME TO THIS COUNTRY THAT HAVE SUCH NEEDS…

Mohamud
BECAUSE OF THEIR SITUATION, YOU KNOW?

Mohamud – WITH SUBTITLES
NO URBAN LIFE EXPERIENCE.
No urban life experience.

NO SCHOOL EXPERIENCE.  NO EDUCTATION.
No school experience. No education.

MORE THAN 95% OF THEM ARE ILLITERATE.
More than 95% of them are illiterate.

NO JOB SKILLS.
No job skills.

THEY NEED A LOT OF SUPPORT.
They need a lot of support.

Mohamud
A LOT OF CASE MANAGEMENT.

Mohamud – WITH SUBTITLES
WHENEVER HE GETS A LETTER OR ENVELOPE,
Whenever Aden gets a letter,

EVEN THE JUNK MAIL,
even the junk mail,

HE BRINGS IT TO THE OFFICE AND HE SHOWS ME.  HE SAYS, “WHAT IS IT?”  ALL THE UTILITIES.  EVERYTHING.
he shows me and says, “What is it?”

I GUESS WE’LL WAIT UNTIL HIS CHILDREN CAN UNDERSTAND EVERYTHING, AND THEY CAN HELP THEM WITH THE UTILITIES AND EVERYTHING.
I guess we’ll wait until his
children understand everything.

Omar (OS)
VERY GOOD, EXCELLENT.  BECAUSE, THIS ONE IS ONE WORD, THIS ONE IS ANOTHER WORD.  YOU HAVE TO REMEMBER THAT.  YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT IT MEANS?

Aden - SUBTITLE
I can’t get it.

Omar
SO DO YOU UNDERSTAND THE WORD ‘NERVOUS’?

TITLE
Aden spends six hours a day
in English class.

TITLE
Jewish Family Service will begin
to arrange job interviews when
his English improves.

TITLE
ATLANTA

Two months in America

TITLE
ARBAI

Erica
WHAT GRADE YOU IN?  FOURTH.  HE IN FOURTH.  YES YOU IS.

Girl in red shirt
I WANT TO BE IN THE CAMERA, TOO.

Erica
NO, YOU’RE NOT AN AFRICAN.  YOU GOT TO BE AN AFRICAN.

Girl in red shirt
I AM.

Erica
NO, YOU’RE NOT.  IS SHE AFRICAN?

Girl in red shirt
I AM AFRICAN-AMERICAN.

Erica
NO, YOU’RE NOT.

Girl in red shirt
I AM.

Older boy
SHE’S AFRICAN-AMERICAN.

Erica
YOU’RE LYING.

Girl in red shirt
NUH-UH.  I’M BROWN.  SEE?  I’M BROWN.

Older boy (OS)
YOU’RE BROWN.

Erica
EVERYBODY IS BLACK IN THE WHOLE SCHOOL, SO WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?

TITLE
MAINUN

TITLE
SAID

Girls’ first teacher
FRIDAY’S A HALF DAY.  WHAT CLASSES ARE WE GOING TO?

Students (OS)
FIFTH.
TITLE
SAHARA

Gelani (OS)
FIVE, NO.  FIRST PERIOD, SECOND, THIRD PERIOD.  FIRST, SECOND, THIRD.

Girls’ first teacher
WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO EAT LUNCH?  FOURTH PERIOD, ‘B’ LUNCH.

TITLE
KHADIJA

Girls’ first teacher
LET’S CLOSE THE FOLDER, PUT IT UNDER YOUR DESK.  I’M CHECKING PENCILS.  LET ME CHECK YOUR FOLDERS.

Younger Gelani
‘LET ME CHECK YOUR FOLDER.  LET ME CHECK YOUR FOLDER.’  TODAY MY FOLDER NO GOOD!

Girls’ first teacher
TOO LOUD.  IS THIS VERY GOOD AND VERY QUIET?

Younger Gelani
NO.

Girls’ first teacher
I DON’T THINK SO, LET’S TRY AGAIN.

Sahara – SUBTITLE
America is better.

Sahara – SUBTITLE
You can focus on your education.

Sahara – SUBTITLE
You don’t have to
worry about cooking.

Sahara – SUBTITLE
You can go to school,
read books, and just go to bed.

Sahara (VO) – SUBTITLE
When I turn 18,
nobody can boss me around.

Sahara (VO) – SUBTITLE
I can go anywhere I want.

Sahara (VO) – SUBTITLE
I’m free.

Sahara (VO) – SUBTITLE
This is America.

Sahara (VO) – SUBTITLE
We have to adopt American culture.

Sahara (VO) – SUBTITLE
I don’t need my culture here.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
If you abandon your culture,
what else do you have?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
If kids stray from their culture,

Arbai – SUBTITLE
they need to be reminded
who they are.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
They will settle down.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
If they follow American
culture, they’re lost.

TITLE
SPRINGFIELD

Three months in America

Boys’ math teacher
NUMBER SIXTEEN, ‘Y’ EQUALS ‘4X’ PLUS SEVEN.  THE SLOPE IS FOUR.

Boys’ math teacher (OS)
SO, WHAT IS THE NEGATIVE RECIPROCAL OF THIS?

TITLE
ALI

TITLE
WARSAME

Boys’ math teacher (OS)
NUMBER SIX?  THERE’S A PATTERN.

Warsame (OS) – SUBTITLE
Ali, have you done problem eight?

Ali (OS) – SUBTITLE
I don’t know.

Ali (OS) - SUBTITLE
Where is number eight?

Warsame (OS) – TITLE
Right above the teacher’s shoulder.

Boys’ math teacher (OS)
IF I FLIP IT, I GET ONE FOURTH, AND IF I CHANGE THE SIGN, THE ORIGINAL SIGN IS POSITIVE, SO IT’S NEGATIVE.

Boys’ math teacher (VO)
I DON’T KNOW WHERE THEY ARE AS FAR AS SKILLS ARE CONCERNED, BUT I THINK IF THEY HAD A TRANSLATOR IT WOULD, IT WOULD HELP A LOT.

Boys’ math teacher
IT’S NOT FAIR TO THEM, AND I THINK IT’S, IT’S KIND OF HARD ON ME BECAUSE I FEEL BAD.  I DON’T REALLY, I’M NOT REALLY SURE HOW TO GRADE THEM.  AND I THINK IF THEY ARE PLACED IN A CLASS LIKE THIS, THEY SHOULD HAVE A TRANSLATOR.

Boy’s math teacher (VO)
THEY HAVE MADE PROGRESS, BUT ALI HAS MADE A LOT MORE THAN WARSAME.  I’LL TELL ALI A PROBLEM AND HE CAN CALCULATE IT IN HIS HEAD.  SO HE CAN DIVIDE IN HIS HEAD, HE CAN MULTIPLY IN HIS HEAD.

Boys’ English teacher
OKAY, NOW WHAT DOES IT SAY IN THE NEXT SENTENCE?

Ali
SPRING… SPE…

Boys’ math teacher
SPRING, YEAH.

Ali
IS ACTION AND ETORY…

Boys’ math teacher
ENERGY.

Ali
ALL DAY.

Boys’ math teacher
NOW DO YOU PLAY ANY SPORTS?

Ali
YEAH, I PLAY.

Boys’ math teacher
WHAT DO YOU PLAY?

Ali
I PLAY SOCCER.

Boys’ math teacher
OKAY, SO YOU CAN SAY THAT THERE.

Ali
I LIKE SOCCER.

Boys’ math teacher
PLAYING SOCCER.

Ali (OS)
‘S’…

Boys’ math teacher
UH-HUH.

Ali (OS)
‘O’…

Ali (VO) – SUBTITLE
If I try hard in school maybe I can
get a soccer scholarship for college.

Ali (VO) – SUBTITLE
I still want to become a doctor.

Soccer player 1
YO, YOUR DADDY’S A KING, RIGHT?

Soccer player 2 (OS)
YEAH, NIGGER, HE’S REALLY A PRINCE?

Soccer player 1 (OS)
YO, HE’S A PRINCE, DUDE!

Soccer player 3
PRINCE, PRINCE OF WHAT, THOUGH?

Soccer player 4 (OS)
HE’S AN AFRICAN PRINCE.

Soccer player 5
YOU REALLY A PRINCE?

Ali
PRINCE?

Soccer player 2
A PRINCE, LIKE, LIKE, LIKE A SON OF A KING.

Ali
I DON’T KNOW.

Soccer player 2
YOU DON’T KNOW.  HE REALLY A PRINCE?

Ali’s friend Said
HE’S SOMALI.

Soccer player 1 (OS)
YOUR DADDY’S THE KING OF SOMALIA OR WHATEVER?

Soccer player 2
OH SNAP!  THAT’S, THAT’S COOL MAN.  I NEVER, I NEVER HEARD OF THAT BEFORE.  THAT’S CHILL, THAT’S CHILL.

Soccer player 6 (OS)
YOU MEAN YOUR FATHER’S THE KING?

Ali
YEAH.

Soccer player 6
YOU MEAN HE RUNS THE WHOLE FUCKING SHIT, RIGHT?  THAT’S WHAT YOU’RE TRYING TO TELL ME?  YOUR FATHER RUNS THE WHOLE FUCKING COUNTRY?

Brazen hussy 1
AT FIRST THEY WASN’T FRIENDLY.  WE HAD TO BREAK THEM IN.

Brazen hussy 2
YEAH, WE HAD TO TALK TO THEM.

Brazen hussy 1
WE’D BE ON THE STAIRS AND THEY WOULD WALK BY US WITHOUT SAYING “EXCUSE ME”.  WE HAD TO TEACH THEM THEY HAVE TO SAY “EXCUSE ME” AND “HI”.  SO NOW WHEN THEY SEE US, THEY BE LIKE “HI”.  “HI.”

Brazen hussy 2
AND THEIR FRIENDLY.  WHERE THEY’RE FROM, THEY WENT THROUGH A LOT, LIKE THEY, A LOT OF KILLING AND MURDERING.  YOU KNOW, THEY’RE NOT, THAT’S ALL THEY’VE SEEN.

Brazen hussy 2 (OS)
THEY’RE TEACHING US THEIR LANGUAGE.

Sanka (OS)
“NAPENDA”.  SAY “NAPENDA”.

Brazen hussies
“NAPENDA”.

Sanka (OS)
“NAPENDA”.

Brazen hussies
“NAPENDA”.

Sanka (OS)
IT MEANS “HELLO.”

Brazen hussies
“HELLO”.

Sanka (OS)
“HELLO”.  IT MEANS, “NAPENDA”, IF YOU SAY “NAPENDA”, I SAY THAT, “UJAMBO.”

Brazen hussy 2 (OS)
OKAY.

Sanka
“THAT’S GOOD”.

Brazen hussy 2 (OS)
THIS IS DIFFERENT, TOO.  THEY ALL GO GROCERY SHOPPING, BUT IT COULD BE ONE FAMILY.  AND THEY’LL SIT IN THE MIDDLE RIGHT HERE…

Brazen hussy 3 (OS)
AND ALL THE DIFFERENT FAMILIES COME AND PICK AND CHOOSE WHAT THEY WANT.  THEY ALL SHARE.

Brazen hussy 2
AND ALL OF US, LIKE, THE AMERICANS BE ON THE PORCH, LOOKIN’ LIKE, “OH MY GOD.”  YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN, LIKE…

Brazen hussy 3
IT’S UNITY.  IT’S UNITY.  HOW THE UNITY WE WISH WE HAD IN AMERICA.

Bantu in orange – SUBTITLE
I need some help here to
take these things up.

TITLE
Six months in America

Raya (OS)
ALI, YOUR CHECK IS COMING!  YOU WILL PROBABLY HAVE IT ON MONDAY.

Raya
YOUR CHECK.  MONDAY.

TITLE
RAYA KATSEN
Caseworker, Jewish Family Services

Raya
IF YOU DON’T GET IT ON MONDAY, GIVE ME A CALL ON THE PHONE.  OKAY?

Raya (VO)
THEY RECEIVE MONEY FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSITIONAL ASSISTANCE.  IT’S NOT A LOT OF MONEY.  SO WITHIN TWO YEARS THEY HAVE TO FIND THEMSELVES A JOB SO THEY CAN SUPPORT THEMSELVES.  AND I THINK THEY ARE STRUGGLING.  EVERY BILL THEY RECEIVE IS LIKE ANOTHER SHOCK.  UNFORTUNATELY, FOR A FAMILY OF THAT SIZE, THAT HOUSING IS ALL WE COULD FIND FOR THEM.  WE PUT THEM ON THE WAITING LIST FOR SUBSIDIZED HOUSING.

Anne Makepeace (OS)
HOW MUCH IS THEIR RENT?

Raya
I THINK THEY PAY SEVEN-HUNDRED FIFTY DOLLARS.  AND THEY ALSO HAVE TO PAY OTHER EXPENSES.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Last month they cut our
food stamps in half.

Sala – SUBTITLE
How much is your cash assistance?

Madina – SUBTITLE
$1050.

Sala – SUBTITLE
You pay the rent from it, right?

Madina – SUBTITLE
There’s not enough money.

Madina – SUBTITLE
We’re overdue on all our bills.

Madina – SUBTITLE
We’re paying for the water,

Madina – SUBTITLE
the telephone,

Madina – SUBTITLE
the electricity,

Madina – SUBTITLE
the gas and everything.

Madina – SUBTITLE
We are totally overwhelmed.

Aden – SUBTITLE
When you say we have problems,
what can I say?

Sala – SUBTITLE
Aden needs to get a job.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Of course. He wants to work.

Madina – SUBTITLE
It’s impossible
because of the language.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
I was a farmer in Somalia.

Aden (VO) – SUBTITLE
That’s the only job I’ve ever had.

Aden – SUBTITLE
I know I need to find a way for
my family to survive in America.

TITLE
ADAY
13 years old

Aden – SUBTITLE
How many are inside this box?

Warsame – SUBTITLE
Who can tell?

Aden – SUBTITLE
It’s countless?

Aden – SUBTITLE
Like grains of sand.

Aden (VO)
HOW MUCH?

Cashier (OS)
THIRTY-THREE SEVENTY-NINE.

Aden
THIRTY?

Cashier (OS)
THIRTY-THREE.

Aden
THIRTY-THREE?

Aden (OS) – SUBTITLE
I don’t think there’s
enough on the card.

Cashier
YOU DON’T HAVE ENOUGH MONEY IN YOUR FOOD STAMPS.  YOU HAVE THIRTY-TWO SIXTY-NINE IN FOOD STAMPS, AND THREE EIGHTY-TWO IN CASH.

Warsame – WITH SUBTITLE
THREE?
Three?

Cashier (OS)
EIGHTY-TWO IN CASH.

Warsame - SUBTITLE
Three hundred dollars
eighty-two cents in the cash card.

Aden – SUBTITLE
No, there’s no three hundred
dollars in cash.

Warsame
THREE EIGHTY-TWO.

Aden - SUBTITLE
I don’t have three hundred
dollars in there.

Aden - SUBTITLE
It won’t be released until the 14th.

Warsame (OS) - SUBTITLE
But that’s what she said.

Warsame (OS) - SUBTITLE
That’s the cash amount in the card.

Aden - SUBTITLE
She will know soon enough.

Warsame – WITH SUBTITLE
THAT’S IT?
That’s it?

Cashier
YEAH.

Warsame (OS)
THANK YOU.

Cashier
HAVE A NICE DAY.

Warsame (OS) - SUBTITLE
The balance, in cash, is…

Warsame (OS) - SUBTITLE
whoaaaa!  Zero!

Aden – SUBTITLE
Don’t let the door go.

Man on phone
HELLO?

Madina - SUBTITLE
Has any money been
put onto your card?

Hindi
HELLO?

Man on phone - SUBTITLE
No, no, no.

Man on phone - SUBTITLE
Nothing has been released
onto the card.

Madina - SUBTITLE
What is your date?

Hindi
HELLO?

Man on phone - SUBTITLE
The 8th.

Hindi
HELLO?

Madina - SUBTITLE
The 8th?

Man on phone – SUBTITLE
Yeah.

Hindi
HELLO?

Man on phone
HELLO?

Madina
BYE.

Hindi
BYE-BYE.

Man on phone
BYE-BYE.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Bye.

Hindi
BYE.

Man on phone
BYE.

Raya (VO)
EVERYBODY WHO IS WORKING WITH THE FAMILY IS TELLING ME THAT MADINA IS NOT REALLY FUNCTIONING THE WAY THEY EXPECTED HER TO FUNCTION.

Raya
MADINA IS JUST SITTING ON THE COUCH, AND ADAY IS DOING ALL THE MOTHER’S DUTY.

Raya (VO)
LIKE A LITTLE CINDERELLA SORT OF THING, NOT BEING A CHILD.  I THINK IT’S ALSO AFFECTED ADEN.  BECAUSE SHE IS DEPRESSED, I THINK HE IS SAD.

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
All night long my mind is
wandering back to that time.

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
How can I ever forget seeing
my own mother murdered?

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
It will haunt me to the death.

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
The medicine will make you better.

Aden – SUBTITLE
There must be a way to open it,
but I’m not getting it.

Madina (OS) – SUBTITLE
What is this thing
that can’t be opened?

Aden – SUBTITLE
    Get this away from me.    

Madina – SUBTITLE
Why did you hit me with it?

Girl bugging Abdi 1
BYE, ABDI.

Hassan (OS) – SUBTITLE
Dad, why are you so late?

Aden – SUBTITLE
What do you mean late?

Aden – SUBTITLE
I was in school myself.
It’s five miles away!

Aden – SUBTITLE
I haven’t even been home yet.

Aden – SUBTITLE
I don’t have a car or a bicycle.

Aden – SUBTITLE
I have no idea what is
happening at home.

Aden – SUBTITLE
I came straight from school,
and now you say I’m late?

Aden (OS) – SUBTITLE
Am I crazy?
What am I supposed to do?

Arbai
EXCUSE ME, EXCUSE ME.

Coworker of Arbai’s
ALL RIGHT, CLEAR THE WAY, GUYS.

TITLE
ATLANTA

Eight months in America

Job Trainer (OS)
MISS ARBAI WILL BE DOING SOME FLOOR WORK THIS MORNING.

TITLE
GOODWILL INDUSTRIES
Job Training Center

Job Trainer (OS)
MISS ARBAI, JUST TAKE IT EASY.  RELAX, YOU CAN DO THIS FOR EIGHT HOURS AND YOU'LL BE FINE.  JUST RELAX, YOU'RE FINE, YOU'RE FINE, YOU'RE FINE, YOU'RE FINE.  YOU ARE IN CONTROL.  DON'T LET IT GET OUT OF YOUR HANDS.  JUST HANDLE IT EASILY, AND COME THIS WAY.  TRY AND COME THIS WAY.  TRY AND COME THIS WAY.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I started working last month.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
They gave me a machine
that makes my kidneys ache.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
It looks like a vacuum
but it’s not a vacuum.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
They call it a scrubber.

TITLE
SAHARA
13 years old

Sahara – SUBTITLE
Pull your pants up!

Sahara’s friend – SUBTITLE
Oh, that boy.

Sahara’s friend – SUBTITLE
He was like that in Kenya, too.

Sahara (VO)
COME ON GUYS.

Sahara
SIT DOWN! BE QUIET!

Sahara
COME ON, SAY 'DREAM'.  'DREAM.'

Classmate of Sahara’s
‘DREAMING.’

Sahara (OS)
‘LIFE.’

Sahara
‘BUT.’

Ms. Webley (VO)
THEY LISTEN TO SAHARA.  WHEN SHE TALKS, THEY LISTEN.  SHE HAS HER CREW.

TITLE
MS. WEBLEY
Sahara’s Teacher

Ms. Webley
STRONG, SHE'S STRONG.  MAYBE SHE GETS IT FROM FAMILY.  STRONG, SHE'S A STRONG YOUNG, YOUNG LADY.

Teacher (OS)
IN THE VIDEO YOU WILL SEE THE INSECTS AND THE REPTILES, THE SNAKES, THE DIFFERENT AMPHIBIANS, THE HARD-SHELLED TORTOISE.

Teacher
SO JUST OPEN YOUR EYES AND PAY ATTENTION AND WAIT, OKAY?  LET'S SEE IF IT'S READY.

TV
AN EAGLE OWL WILL TAKE COLD DEER FLESH JUST AS EAGERLY AS THE WARM BODIES OF VOLES.

Teacher (OS)
GELANI, COME HERE.

Teacher
SAHARA.

Sahara (OS)
YEAH?

Teacher
COME.

Female student (OS) – SUBTITLE
Sahara hit him, not Bakara…

Sahara – SUBTITLE
You have no manners

Sahara – SUBTITLE
you squinty-eyed whore!

Sahara (OS)
NO, IF I CAN EXPLAIN!

Sahara – SUBTITLE
Hey, listen! Listen to me…

Short boy – SUBTITLE
Why did you hit me?

Principal (VO)
I'VE GOTTEN A REFERRAL FROM...

Principal
MS. BURBRIDGE AND MS. WEBLEY...

Principal (OS)
SAYING THAT SHE YELLS AT THEM...

Principal
AND SHE REFUSES TO BE QUIET IN CLASS.

Student Translator
SHE SAYS THAT SHE DIDN'T SAY NOTHING.  ONLY A GIRL ASKED HER, 'CAN I BORROW A PENCIL,' AND THEN WHEN SHE GAVE IT TO HER, SHE SAID SHE JUST, THE TEACHER JUST SEEN HER TALKING TO THE GIRL AND THEN SHE SAID, 'I'LL TAKE YOU TO THE OFFICE.'

Principal
SO SHE'S SAYING THE TEACHER MADE THAT UP?

Student Translator
SHE SAID I DON'T KNOW WHERE SHE GETS THAT FROM.  SHE SAID, 'I'M JUST GOING TO TAKE YOU TO THE OFFICE.'

Principal (OS)
IN ADDITION IT SAYS…

Principal
THAT SHE REFUSED TO GO TO THE TRAILER.

Sahara – SUBTITLE
I didn’t know which trailer,
so I asked her to take me there.

Sahara – SUBTITLE
She said, “Just go.”

Principal (OS)
WHY WOULD A TEACHER…

Principal
TELL HER TO GO TO ANOTHER TRAILER AND NOT EXPLAIN WHERE IT WAS?

Principal (OS)
I DON'T UNDERSTAND.

Principal (VO)
SO MANY OF THEM COME TO US.  THEY HAVE NOT BEEN TO SCHOOL BEFORE.  THEY'RE NOT ACCUSTOMED TO WHAT WE DO OR HOW WE WORK HERE.  AND SO IT'S A BIG ADJUSTMENT.  AND SAHARA IS ON LOCAL SCHOOL PROBATION.

Khadija – WITH SUBTITLE
SAHARA SCHOOL FIGHTING.  BOY, GIRL, TEACHER.
Sahara was fighting at school.

Khadija – WITH SUBTITLE
SHE ABUSED MY TEACHER.
She abused my teacher.

Abdirahman (OS)
YES, SHE SAID THAT SHE ABUSED MY TEACHER.

Abdirahman (OS) – WITH SUBTITLE
GAVE HER THREE DAYS…
She got three days suspension.

Khadija – WITH SUBTITLE
TEACHER, SHE SAID LIKE THIS… FINGER.
Teacher… like this… finger.

Khadija
YEAH, AMERICA!

Khadija – SUBTITLE
How do you say it?

Abdirahman – WITH SUBTITLE
WHEN SHE COME IN AMERICA, YEAH, AMERICA, SHE SAY THAT, IT’S FREE.
When Sahara came to America,
she said that it’s free here.

Abdirahman
YEAH, SHE BECOME FREE IN AMERICA, NOW.

Khadija (OS)
AFRICA'S NOT FREE.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I have raised my children alone.

Arbai  – SUBTITLE
Sahara would never behave like
that if my husband were here.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
When she grew as
tall as my shoulder,

Arbai – SUBTITLE
she stopped listening to me.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
Why hasn’t Khadija become like that?

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
Some children are
straightened by God

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
while others go astray.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
Sahara used to be so quiet.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
But here she sees every
woman with a man.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
It all started with Gelani.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
He first came here to
babysit for the children.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
He’s a 23 year-old man,

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
and Sahara is not even 14.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
Every time he showed up,

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I was amazed at the way
she would coo and behave.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I asked myself,
what happened to this girl?

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
His intentions were not honorable.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I told her to be careful

Arbai – SUBTITLE
but she wouldn’t heed my advice.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
She came home once at 1 AM.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
He called her and they went out.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Later, she started
banging on the door

Arbai – SUBTITLE
yelling, “Hey, lady! Open the door.”

Arbai – SUBTITLE
“Open the door!”

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I opened the door and told her
if she addresses me as “hey”

Arbai – SUBTITLE
hasn’t she insulted herself?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I said if she comes home late again

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I will beat her.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
She said, you think you can beat me?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I said yes.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Then she slapped me very hard.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I knew I couldn’t beat her.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
And she said if I dared touch her

Arbai – SUBTITLE
she would call 911 on me.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
There was nothing I could do.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I just let her be.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
Gelani would have destroyed her life.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I forbade her to see him.

TITLE
SPRINGFIELD

Nine months in America

Uncle Abdulkadir (OS) – SUBTITLE
The letter says, on the
12th day of the 11th month,

Uncle Abdulkadir (OS) – SUBTITLE
you must appear by 11 o’clock

Uncle Abdulkadir (OS) – SUBTITLE
or your assistance will be terminated.

Uncle Abdulkadir (OS) – SUBTITLE
It says Madina must go to school.

Uncle Abdulkadir – SUBTITLE
They may tell you to stick
the little ones in daycare.

Madina – SUBTITLE
I can’t leave my children
with a stranger.

Madina (OS) – SUBTITLE
Shame on the government if they cut
off the food stamps from these babies.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Their ultimatum is, do as I say
or else you lose your assistance.

Aden – SUBTITLE
We’re doing everything we can.
Will we have to resort to stealing?

Madina – SUBTITLE
Aden, we’ll be arrested.

Aden – SUBTITLE
Better to be arrested than starve.

Madina – SUBTITLE
If I steal, the government
will arrest me.

Madina – SUBTITLE
They are the ones threatening
to cut off my assistance,

Madina – SUBTITLE
accusing me of disobeying,

Madina – SUBTITLE
and terminating my food stamps,

Madina – SUBTITLE
when I don’t have enough money to
feed my children or even afford rent.

Madina (OS) – SUBTITLE
I don’t have anywhere to work, and if
I resort to stealing, they’d arrest me.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Hold the baby.

 Madina’s friend (OS) – SUBTITLE
Put on a jacket,
the house is freezing.

Madina – SUBTITLE
The government is playing with us.

Social Worker
YOUR YOUNGER CHILD HAS TURNED TWO SO NOW YOUR WIFE HAS TO DO SOMETHING TO MEET OUR WORK REQUIREMENT.

Mohammed – SUBTITLE
He said because Hussein
is now two years old

Mohammed – SUBTITLE
Madina has to either
work or go to school.

Aden – SUBTITLE
I have no objection to that,

Aden – SUBTITLE
but now the winter’s here and
we have to pay for heat

Aden – SUBTITLE
and the rent is $750.

Aden – SUBTITLE
Plus the electric and the phone…

Mohammed (OS) – SUBTITLE
They don’t care about the telephone.

Aden – SUBTITLE
No, I am just telling you.

Aden – SUBTITLE
Am I not allowed to speak?

Social Worker (OS)
BUT MEANWHILE SHE'S REQUIRED TO DO SOMETHING TO MEET OUR WORK REQUIREMENT, RIGHT NOW.

Social Worker
UNLESS, LIKE I EXPLAINED BEFORE, IF SHE HAS MEDICAL PROBLEMS THAT SHE IS UNABLE TO PERFORM...

Social Worker (OS)
IF SHE'S PREGNANT, SHE WOULD BE EXCEPT FROM THE WORK REQUIREMENT.

Mohammed – SUBTITLE
Would you like to have more children?

Madina – SUBTITLE
That’s not up to me.

Madina – SUBTITLE
If God gives me a child,
I will thank Him.

Madina – SUBTITLE
If He doesn’t, I will also thank Him.

Aden
SHOES.  SHOES, SHOES, SHOES.

Raya (VO)
MADINA WILL HAVE TO GO TO SCHOOL NOW, BUT, HOW WOULD SHE GO TO SCHOOL?  IN THIS, KIND OF LIKE, CONDITION?  I DON’T THINK SHE IS ABLE TO.

TITLE
Jewish Family Service
has arranged for Madina
to get medical attention.

The work requirement
has been temporarily waived.

TITLE
ATLANTA

Ten months in America

Goodwill Boss (VO)
ARBAI ABDI!  YEAH!

Arbai
GIVE ME MONEY!

Goodwill Boss
MOHAMMED.  JOHHNY, JOHNNY'S NOT HERE.  HAWA.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I’m afraid to tear it.

Arbai  (OS) – SUBTITLE
Ahh... the check is inside.

Arbai (OS)
TWO HUNDRED FORTY-FOUR DOLLARS AND SIXTY-THREE CENTS.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I have a safe place for it.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Just let me go home.

Anab (OS) – SUBTITLE
Are you going to save it?

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Yes, I’ll save some of it,
and buy clothes for my kids.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
Said, Mainun, Khadija, Sahara,
all of them.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
They need new clothes
and I will buy them some.

Teacher in classroom (VO)
SO WHAT DO YOU DO?

Sahara (VO)
ZERO HERE.

Teacher in classroom (VO)
YES...

Sahara
TWENTY.

Teacher in classroom (OS)
OKAY.

Ms. Webley (VO)
SHE USED TO GET INTO A LOT OF TROUBLE, BUT SHE GOT BETTER.  SAHARA GOT SUSPENDED.  WHEN SHE RETURNED, WE HAD A GRADUATION CEREMONY FOR THE EMERGING STUDENTS.

TITLE
MS. WEBLEY
Sahara’s teacher

Ms. Webley
AND ALL HER BROTHERS AND SISTERS GOT AWARDS.  SHE WAS THE ONLY ONE.

Ms. Webley (VO)
I WATCHED WHEN KHADIJA WENT UP, AND DUALE WENT UP.  AND SHE SAT THERE IN SLENCE.  THAT WAS HER WAKE-UP CALL.  I'VE WATCHED HER AND SHE'S EVOLVED MORE.

Teacher in classroom
GOOD JOB.

Ms Webley (VO)
SO NOW SHE'S MORE FOCUSED.  SHE FINALLY UNDERSTANDS THAT IF SHE DOES RIGHT SHE'LL MOVE ON.  I THINK SAHARA CAN GO TO COLLEGE AFTER HIGH SCHOOL.  I THINK SHE CAN.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
My older daughter, Khadija,
is engaged to be married.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
Abdirahman is courting her
in the traditional way.

TITLE
ABDIRAHMAN
Khadija’s fiancé

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
He came to me and said,

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
please don’t give her
hand to any other man.

Arbai (VO) – SUBTITLE
I love her.

Abdirahman (VO) – WITH SUBTITLE
I COME TO MY AUNT ARBAI.  I SAID, ‘I NEED YOUR DAUGHTER.’
I went to Arbai and said,
I need your daughter.

Abdirahman (VO)
SHE SAID, 'NO PROBLEM.'  'NO PROBLEM.'

Abdirahman – WITH SUBTITLE
YEAH, I SAY THAT, ‘I LIKE YOU VERY MUCH.’
I said that I like you very much.

Abdirahman
SHE SAID THAT, ‘IF YOU LOVE ME, YOU CAN GO TO MY PARENT.  YEAH, THAT IS GOOD.  NO PROBLEM.

Abdirahman (OS) – WITH SUBTITLE
I LOVE YOU.
I love you.

Khadija (OS) – SUBTITLE
I will wait until Abdirahman is ready.

Khadija – SUBTITLE
Then we’ll get married.

Khadija – SUBTITLE
When he is ready, I am ready too.

Khadija (OS) – SUBTITLE
Anytime.

Khadija – SUBTITLE
I have passionate desires.

Khadija (OS) – SUBTITLE
I’m in heat.

Arbai (OS) – SUBTITLE
I will get them married
as soon as possible.

Arbai – SUBTITLE
I will give them a beautiful wedding.

TITLE
SPRINGFIELD

One year in America

TITLE
ABDI
11 years old

Mohamud (VO) – WITH SUBTITLE
WHEN THEY CAME HERE…
When they came here,

Mohamud (VO) – SUBTITLE
WE KNEW THAT THEY COULD NOT AFFORD TO CONTINUE PAYING $750 EXCLUDING UTILITIES.
they could not afford to
continue paying $750 for rent.

Mohamud (VO) – SUBTITLE
SO WE PUT THEM ON THE WAITING LIST, AND LUCKILY THEY GOT THIS PUBLIC HOUSING NOW.
So we put them on the waiting list,
and luckily they got public housing.

Mohamud – SUBTITLE
THE RENT IS ONE HUNDRED AND SIXTY-FIVE DOLLARS COMPARED TO SEVEN HUNDRED AND FIFTY.
They rent is $165 compared to $750.

Mohamud (VO) – SUBTITLE
THE ONLY THING THAT ADEN NEEDS TO PAY IS THE ELECTRIC AND THE TELEPHONE.  THIS HOUSE IS VERY NICE AND HE LOVES IT.

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
In the old house,
I was always worried,

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
the rent so high we had
to go without heat,

Madina – SUBTITLE
letters pouring in demanding money,

Madina – SUBTITLE
and the man standing there.

Madina – SUBTITLE
Now, thank God,

Madina (VO) – SUBTITLE
we don’t have those problems.

Madina – SUBTITLE
I am happy when I go to bed.

Madina – SUBTITLE
I’m at peace.

Teacher (VO)
IF HE CONTINUES THE WAY HE IS GOING, HE'LL CATCH UP, BELIEVE ME.  BECAUSE HE'S VERY SMART.  HE'S A VERY SMART LITTLE BOY.  HE CATCHES ON REALLY GOOD.  HE TELLS ME 'I KNOW, I KNOW, DON'T TELL ME.'  AND HE'LL CATCH UP, YOU KNOW.

Teacher
AND TO REPEAT HIS LANGUAGE AND ENGLISH AND MY LANGUAGE, YOU KNOW, HE'S GOING TO LEARN.  HE'S GOING TO BE A VERY SMART LITTLE BOY, VERY SMART.

School PA
SECOND-GRADE CHILDREN TO CLASS THREE, SECOND-GRADE CHILDREN TO CLASS THREE.  ALL BUSES HAVE BEEN CALLED.  CHILDREN FOR THE AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAM, GO TO YOUR STATIONS.

Boys’ English teacher
DO YOU HAVE A PENCIL THAT I CAN BORROW?

Boys’ math teacher
HE WAS WORKING HARD IN THE BEGINNING, BUT HE SEEMS TO HAVE GIVEN UP FOR THE MOST PART.  HE WORKS OCCASSIONALLY, BUT NOT CONSISTENTLY.  IT SEEMS THAT HE’S COME TO THE REALIZATION THAT, ‘I’M NOT GOING TO GET IT, SO WHY PUT THE EFFORT?’

Boy’s English teacher
ALI.  WHAT ABOUT YOU, HAS IT BEEN EASY HERE?

Ali
NO.

Boys’ English teacher (OS)
NO?  NOW, WHAT CAN YOU TELL ME ABOUT LIFE BEFORE COMING TO AMERICA?  THEY DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU WENT THROUGH BEFORE.  WARSAME, ALI...

Ali
NO, I’M NOT TALKING THAT.

Boys’ math teacher (OS)
CAN YOU TELL US?

Ali – WITH SUBTITLE
I’M NOT, I’M NOT TALKING THAT.
I’m not talking about that.

Boys’ math teacher (OS)
ALI, YOU DON’T WANT TO TELL US?

Ali
NO, MISS.

Boys’ math teacher (OS)
COME ON.  JOIN THE GROUP.

Ali (VO) – SUBTITLE
The coach says I’m too old
for the soccer team now

Ali (VO) – SUBTITLE
and my grades aren’t good enough.

Ali – SUBTITLE
I got a letter about an athletic
scholarship to college

Ali (OS) – SUBTITLE
but it costs $120 to apply.

Ali (OS) – SUBTITLE
We don’t have the money.

Mohamud (OS) – SUBTITLE
So you can’t play the game you love.

TITLE
After one year in high school,
Ali drops out.

TITLE
15 months in America

Aden starts work
as a landscaper and carpenter.

Aden’s boss
SEE?  ALL UP AND DOWN.  OKAY?

Citation

Main credits

Makepeace, Anne (Screenwriter)
Makepeace, Anne (Producer)
Makepeace, Anne (Director)
Churchill, Joan (Cinematographer)
Broomfield, Barney (Cinematographer)
Lampson, Mary (Film editor)
Goodman, Joel (Composer)

Other credits

Directors of photography, Joan Churchill, Barney Broomfield; editor, Mary Lampson; composer, Joel Goodman.


Distributor credits

Anne Makepeace Productions

Anne Makepeace Productions
Anne Makepeace
Directors of Photography: Joan Churchill, Barney Broomfield
Editor: Mary Lampson
Composer: Joel Goodman
Associate Producer: Su Kim
Associate Editor: Brad Kimbrough
A co-production of Anne Makepeace Productions, Inc. and ITVS in association with POV/American Documentary, Inc. with support from the Sundance Institute Documentary Fund

Docuseek2 subjects

Social Work
Migration
Multicultural Studies
Cultural Anthropology
American Studies
Somalia

Distributor subjects

African Studies
African-American Studies
American Studies
Anthropology
Globalization
Human Rights
Humanities
Immigration
Migration and Refugees
Multicultural Studies
Political Science
Race and Racism
Social Justice
Social Psychology
Sociology

Keywords

Somali Bantu, slavery, Africa, urban America, Kakuma refugee camp, Kenya, Jewish Family Service, Springfield, MA, Atlanta, racism, poverty,"Rain in a Dry Land",Bullfrog Films

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