Press Release: FilmAid International Celebrates its 10th Annual Film Festival in Nairobi and Kakuma and Dadaab Refugee Settlements

From September 19th - 23rd in Dadaab and Kakuma refugee camps and October 4th - 6th 2016, FilmAid will partner with UNHCR and Safaricom to host its 10th Annual Film Festival, celebrating the numerous untold stories from refugees and other marginalized populations throughout the world. Showcasing the films of young refugee filmmakers from Kakuma and Dadaab Refugee Camps, the festival also provides an opportunity for international filmmakers to share their stories on this years theme: 

'Where I Am' - Stories of the relationship between identity and the environment

FilmAid's unique festival opens opportunities for young refugee filmmakers to collaborate with professionals through discussions and workshops as well as providing a window for audiences to watch stories from the world's largest refugee camps. Bonnie Wright, Director, Actress and friend of FilmAid said: "I love storytelling and I love communicating ideas. For refugees in secluded communities, the ability to communicate ideas can empower and instill hope. These ideas can come to life through making and watching films, enabling an enhanced viewpoint both locally and globally. Education is one of the most powerful implements that we can give to each other."

Festival Background       

Held annually in Kenya, FilmAid's Film Festival, supported by the US Government and UNHCR, strives to fulfill FilmAid's vision of informing, inspiring and empowering refugees and other marginalized populations throughout the world. Through FilmAid's extensive programming in Nairobi, Kakuma and Dadaab, each year FilmAid is able to train, support and empower more than 50 refugee youth to tell their own stories through the power of film. In addition, the Film Festival provides independent filmmakers worldwide the opportunity to share stories with refugees in the Kenyan camps, allowing for a shared artistic communication.  

Note to Editors: 

About FilmAid

FilmAid was founded by independent filmmakers in 1999 in response to the refugee crisis during and after the Kosovo War. It is perhaps best known for its original program model: mobile screenings of beloved comedies and other entertainment to provide psychological relief and much-needed hope to child refugees and others suffering the ravages of trauma and displacement. Nearly two decades later, FilmAid is an innovative leader in humanitarian and crisis communications, using a community-based approach to create and distribute life-saving information to refugees in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Using film, radio and journalism created by refugees, FilmAid engages communities with dignity and respect, providing information about their rights, safety, health and well-being. Alongside public information campaigns, FilmAid trains young people in all aspects of storytelling and communications, empowering the next generation to advocate for its own rights and community needs. Connect to FilmAid at, @FilmAidkenya and at

About FilmAid and the Kenya refugee community

FilmAid works with refugees and communities in informal settlements in Nairobi, in Kakuma Refugee Camp and the greater Turkana County, and in Dadaab Refugee Settlements. By January 2015, Kenya was hosting more than 585,000 refugees and asylum seekers (UNHCR Report 2015). FilmAid Kenya reaches over 400,000 people annually with life-saving health and protection information.

Further information and contacts


Naomi O’Callaghan, External Communications Manager;


The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees, including the right to education. It strives to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another State, with the option to return home voluntarily, integrate locally or to resettle in a third country. It also has a mandate to help stateless people.

About Safaricom’s work with refugees

Safaricom has partnered with UNHCR and the World Food Program on Bamba Chakula to enable refugees to access food through a cashless system that facilitates secure electronic payments through their M-PESA wallet, which can only be used to purchase food. The innovation removes the opportunity for corruption by eliminating middle-men, reducing the cost of distributing relief aid, creating employment and business opportunities for people in refugee camps, and giving refugees the opportunity to choose what they prefer to eat within their circumstances.

Evening screening, Kakuma.                          Copyright: FilmAid International

Evening screening, Kakuma.                          Copyright: FilmAid International