A message from our Campaign Director, Rebecca Ashdown.
“In March 2019 I was overjoyed to visit Kyiv, Ukraine for the first time. I was invited to attend the DocuDays UA International Human Rights Documentary Festival, and present a masterclass as part of their industry programme. I’d had the pleasure of meeting some of the festival team the previous year in Warsaw at WatchDocs festival, as part of an incredible programme supporting human rights film festivals across Europe.
I was immensely inspired by the creativity and vision of the festival programme. I met with courageous local filmmakers, activists, and artists, who generously shared their work and stories.
I have such wonderful memories of my short time visiting this beautiful city and was welcomed with such warmth from everyone I met. A local journalist took me and a few other international guests for dinner at the hidden Ostannya Barykada Restaurant, to sample the local culinary delights. My taxi driver gave me a history lesson and impromptu tour on the ride back to the airport before I flew home.
Today, on this dark day, I’m thinking of Darya Bassel, Olga Birzul, Iryna Shvartsblat, Daryna Nikolenko, Julia Kartashova, Yuliia Kovalenko, and the whole DocuDays team.
All of us at Together FIlms stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine and our colleagues and friends who continue their human rights and humanitarian work in these harsh circumstances.
We regard their struggle with great concern, and we are inspired by their commitment and resilience.
Sending strength, support, and solidarity.”