We follow World Jewish Relief supporter, Dan Newton, as he travels to Lviv in Ukraine to see the work of World Jewish Relief first hand. He meets several people who receive assistance from World Jewish Relief, including Clara who, as a child, miraculously survived the siege of Leningrad.
Make a centrepiece film for World Jewish Relief’s annual dinner which raises over a million pounds each year for the charity.
The dinner is a marquee event on the London Jewish community calendar. Every year the evening builds up to the showing of a film produced for the event. Immediately afterwards pledge cards are distributed. Many of the people in the audience have been coming to the event for years and so there’s a real danger they will feel they’ve seen it all before. The film needs to punch though this and leave the audience feeling moved to give.
This is the second year that duckrabbit has made a film for World Jewish Relief’s annual dinner. This year we wanted to tell the story through the eyes of a World Jewish supporter meeting with some of the people World Jewish Relief has supported. After I came across an extremely powerful clip of Dan Newton online, which actually opens our film, I approached him with the idea of working with us. Dan jumped at the chance and the film proves what a great choice he was. When he looks at the camera at the end of the film, clearly shaken by his experience, he delivers an extraordinarily powerful moment almost demanding more be done to help.
This is best left to Tanya Freedman, World Jewish Relief’s media manager, who commissioned the film:
‘The audience were gripped from the very first moment and the double whammy of Dan’s emotional testimony when he came off the ferry, followed by Semyon’s story about Chernobyl had them glued to the screen for the duration. When the film ended there was a good ten seconds of total silence as people digested it all. We feel sure that it would have nudged people in the right direction in terms of donations – so far over £1million, and we’re hoping that will continue to rise.
Thanks so much for everything you did to make this happen – we really are delighted.’
Dan Newton had this to say:
‘Benjamin, the director, was the kind glue that kept us all working together towards the ultimate aim of telling Semyon, Rosa and Clara’s stories in the most honest, powerful yet sympathetic light. He produced an incredibly moving film that transported six hundred people gathered together in a room thousands of miles away to the harsh reality of life for many elderly people in Lviv. When it finished you could hear a pin drop.‘.