As the nation’s policymakers debate how to respond to refugees, community members may seek out resources that help open dialogue around the issues. At POV, we’ve seen how compelling storytelling can create space for open and informed conversations about hot-button issues and offer insights into the human side of policy debates. Many faces of international conflicts and refugee experiences at home and abroad have been revealed on our series, and we recommend four films that bring audiences to deeper understanding of these critical issues:
Lost Boys of Sudan follows two young Dinka refugees, Peter and Santino, through their first year in America. Their struggle asks us to rethink what it means to be an American. Stream the film | Screen the film | Download the lesson plan
A World Not Ours is a passionate, bittersweet account of one family’s multi-generational experience living as permanent refugees. Now a Danish resident, director Mahdi Fleifel grew up in the Ain el-Helweh refugee camp in southern Lebanon, established in 1948 as a temporary refuge for exiled Palestinians. At the time of filming, the camp housed 70,000 people. Fleifel’s childhood memories are surprisingly warm and humorous, a testament to the resilience of the community. Yet his yearly visits reveal the increasing desperation of family and friends who remain trapped in psychological as well as political limbo. Screen the film | Download the lesson plan
Neuland explores how one teacher prepares his class of immigrants from around the world for their new lives in Switzerland, as they struggle to learn a new language, prepare themselves for employment, and reveal their innermost hopes and dreams. Screen the film | Download the lesson plan
Special Flight documents the plight of undocumented immigrants at a detention center in Geneva, Switzerland, unearthing contradictions between compassionate social policies and intractable immigration laws. Screen the film | Download the lesson plan
Borrow the DVDs for free to bring these films and conversations to your community, school or workplace. You can also visit our Educators Page for access to standards-aligned lesson plans and streaming clips for use in the classroom. For additional films, explore our DVD Lending Library, conveniently sorted into topics including Immigration, International, Rights & Liberties, and War & Peace.