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Springfield Videographer is Raising Funds for Rwanda Documentary


A Springfield videographer will be traveling to Rwanda at the end of the month to produce a documentary about forgiveness and healing in a country still reeling from genocide that took more than 800 thousand lives in 100 days in 1994. There will be a concert this Wednesday evening at 7 at the Gillioz featuring Big Smith and other musicians to help raise funds for the documentary. KSMU's Missy Shelton reports.

A Springfield videographer will be traveling to Rwanda at the end of the month to produce a documentary about forgiveness and healing in a country still reeling from genocide that took more than 800 thousand lives in 100 days in 1994. There will be a concert this Wednesday evening at 7 at the Gillioz featuring Big Smith and other musicians to help raise funds for the documentary.

The money will allow Patrick Mureithi, owner of Seesaw Videos to work with a film crew in Rwanda to document a series of three-day workshops put on by the African Great Lakes Initiative. The workshops help people from opposing groups understand each other by first, breaking the ice, then teaching them how to listen, and then sharing experiences. Mureithi says it's also about identifying common suffering.

Dealing with the pain means listening to the other side. Mureithi says during the workshop, Tutsis and Hutus will listen to each other.

Mureithi grew up in Kenya. But he says the state-run media didn't report on the genocide and internet was not available. So, he only heard bits of information about what was happening in Rwanda.

If there is to be healing for those who lived through the genocide, Mureithi says it will come from fostering communication.

Mureithi says he hopes his documentary will resonate with people in the Ozarks because at its core, it will be about universal themes like forgiveness. He says hearing about the efforts of these people to forgive will help give others some perspective in dealing with their own personal conflicts.

The benefit concert for the production of the documentary is this Wednesday at 7 at the Gillioz. There will be musical performances by Big Smith and others. Mureithi will be in Rwanda and Burundi from July 25-August 19. He says he hopes to produce the documentary within 5 months of returning to the US.