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The ways we came together in 2023

Just back from our 5th SolidariLabs, this time in the magnificent Andes of Peru, we’d like to share some positive highlights of this past year in the midst of our world at war. (Pictured above: the moonrise over the Andes during our SolidariLabs gathering, early December 2023)

BORDERLAND | The Line Within is finished!

We will make sure that BORDERLAND is at the heart of the fight for the humane reform of our broken immigration system and in showing a way forward out of this manufactured and politicized crisis. These ideas are certain to be at the center of the national debate as we head into this election year.

WHEN THE MOUNTAINS TREMBLE – 40th Anniversary Event 

Kicked off at the Woodstock Film Festival will continue through 2024 in film festivals, schools, and cinemas around the world. Meira Blaustein, the Director of the festival remarked, “The heroic documentation of the war in Guatemala between the government and the revolutionary groups is still relevant today, with global implications across countries and continents.” 

SolidariLabs Peru

We completed our 5th SolidariLabs with an exceptionally talented group of Peruvian documentary filmmakers, movement leaders, and artists led by Peruvian screenwriter, director, and professor Ana Caridad Sánchez and facilitated by Gibrán Rivera.

Guardianas de los Ríos 

The VIVX team launched Guardianas de los Ríos (River Guardians), a project that highlights the positive narratives surrounding the Afro-Colombian women who protect the rivers of Chocó, especially the Atrato, a river recognized by the Colombian Constitutional Court as a river with rights. 

Silver Sun Residency 

The SolidariLabs/VIVX leadership team – from Guatemala, Peru, Mexico, and Colombia – had the opportunity to return to the Silver Sun Artists’ Residence to share projects such as Guardianas de los Ríos with the Bard College and greater Hudson River Valley communities, and to plan future collaborations and labs. Follow us on Instagram @redvivx

Guatemala’s historic presidential election

Skylight’s Vaclav Masek brought you exciting on-the-ground coverage of Guatemala’s historic election of Bernardo Arévalo. Stay tuned for Vaclav’s reporting of Arévalo’s presidential inauguration in January and read his first, second, and third dispatches from the campaign. 

A note of celebration

Gibrán Rivera, the talented facilitator of Skylight SolidariLabs from the very start, wed the love of his life, Tuesday Ryan-Hart and they shared part of their honeymoon with us in Peru.

They told us, “Jumping the broom was a symbolic way for enslaved people in the United States to recognize their marriages. We kept this tradition as a way to honor ancestors who chose love in the midst of despair.”

We end this year sharing their joy in our hearts. 

Photos: All courtesy Skylight except Bernardo Arévalo on campaign trail by: Moises Castillo/AP, photos from SolidariLabs Perú: Valentina Vargas, Vanessa Cuervo, Melle van Essen, Skylight

Pamela Yates

Pamela Yates is an award-winning film director and the co-founder of Skylight, a not-for-profit media organization that for over 35 years has combined cinematic arts with the quest for justice to inspire the defense of human rights. Skylight’s films and programs strengthen social justice movements and catalyze collaborative networks of artists and activists.

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