Today marked the third day of the screening of the first round of the presidential debates, today in camp Villaembetta in Port-au-Prince Haiti. The outdoor movie screening was as successful as days past, as we worked with FilmAid International and crews of local Haitians in producing the event. Each day's screening requires meeting with the local camp leaders and receiving permission to screen the debates, as well as arranging for a proper location for the setup of the inflatable movie screen and system equipment.
Camp Villaembetta was about 45 minutes away from our operational base, and we began setup around 3 PM. For a moment we thought the weather would bring rain to our event, and so we were prepared with tarps and plastic to cover the outdoor projector and outdoor speaker system if it started to pour. Luckily, we only saw a very slight drizzle, and all of the equipment remained safe and in working order.
In addition to screening the presidential debates, we also showed several films about voting, hygiene, and camp life.В The residents of camp Villaembetta were particularly excited to view their favorite Haitian comedian after the debates and short films. There were times when the entire audience erupted in laughter and cheer as (ironically), the comedian pretended in a skit, to be a presidential candidate, and found himself in several silly situations.
Overall, we are very happy with how the screenings are going. We are looking forward to implementing a few additional media items to the programming. Tomorrow we will have a live video camera on hand, as we will be inviting residents of the camp to come up in front of the audience and share their stories.В We will also feature a live storybook reading by one of our lead technicians who has been working with the camps for months in reading books to the children. We are excited to update the blog with how tomorrow's events turn out.В We are thrilled that the technology of Open Air Cinema's outdoor movie systems can bring educational opportunities and a moment of joy to the residents of the refugee camps whose lives were devastated in the earthquake that struck Haiti over a year ago.