A new GLOBALO film on Aleppo in Syria and the journey to Germany from the children’s perspective has been released recently and shown in the United Nations in New York and documented on cnn:

  • “Watani – My Homeland” is directed by GLOBALO Co-Founder Marcel Mettelsiefen and co-produced by GLOBALO News Publishing and GLOBALO founder Dr Hubertus Hoffmann.
  • The film tells the story of the war alongside the story of one Syrian family with four children. The film shows the rare, emotional side of the conflict and its effect on the family’s fate. 
  • The director met the family and began filming their journey in 2013 as Aleppo was falling apart.
  • He followed them for three years until they eventually found refuge in Germany. The director says in a Newsweek interview that “If they had had the choice, they would never have left.” But, the children’s father, who was fighting for the revolution, was captured by ISIS, and their mother decided it was safer to go. They family now lives in Goslar, Germany, and the children are in school and have learned to speak German.
  • Marcel Mettelsiefen, previously directed “Children on the Frontline” and aimed to add a new dimension to this five year war–the children’s perspective. The previous film won a total of 18 international awards, including an EMMY and two BAFTAs.
  • He said in a Frontline interview that he hopes people come away from the film “moved by this family’s capacity for resilience and renewal. These children and their mother have shown me that human beings are very flexible to adapt to any kind of situation, even some of the most horrific ones you can imagine.”

Reviews:

  • “’Children of Syria’ runs just under an hour, and yet it tells the story of a lifetime, with more nuance and human detail than films twice as long. It’s hard to put into words just how provocative and profound this film is. …It is, quite simply, unforgettable. “Children of Syria” is one of the most remarkable films about children and war ever made.” – TV Worth Watching
  • You haven’t understood the Syrian refugee crisis until you’ve seen this beautiful, textured story about home, escape, identity and anguish. – The Globe and Mail

CNN Interview

Mettelsiefen was interviewed on CNN by Christiane Amanpour, which you can watch below.

“It is extraordinary,” Amanpour says reacting to the trailer, “just the sight of what we just showed. The littlest kid, acting out how she thought she died when she felt a shell.”

The film has been featured on Frontline in the US, in the UK on Channel 4, and in Germany on ZDF.

You can watch the trailer below:




The situation in Syria for children

A new report by UNICEF gives the details of how the war has affected children in Syria and surrounding areas over the last five years.

The refugee crisis is quickly escalating:

  • The number of refugee children went from about 520,000 in 2013 to 2.4 million in 2016.
  • The 7 million kids still in Syria are living in poverty,
  • 70% of them have no access to clean water to drink and bathe.

A particularly sad number: 3.7 million. That is the number of children who have only known war, having been born after the conflict began in Syria.

Instead of getting an education, some children must fight:

  • In 2015, 400 children were killed.
  • Children as young as seven are being recruited to fight.
  • There are 2.8 million children in Syria who aren’t in school.
  • Over 6,000 schools are now unable to be used.