Rony Figueroa, MPA – Vice President & Co Founder – GAHFU, Inc.
The Garifuna International Indigenous Film Festival spearheaded by Freda Sideroff, President and Founder, came to life a few years ago in Los Angeles to fill the gap that was much needed to close the circle of contributions to humanity that Garifuna provide. Garifuna is not only known for its infectious music or fascinating dances that tell the oral history of this resilient people, but it is also a people of profound respect for nature, their deep connection to their ancestors, and their thirst and desire to excel in education.
The Garifuna International Indigenous Film Festival was created to promote filmmaking among Garinagu and among those who have found in this culture an interest to tell the Garifuna’s unique story. It was born to showcase the contributions that Garinagu have made throughout the years in their host countries where they reside such as Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, Belize, The United States of America, and in their homeland Saint Vincent & The Grenadines, Yurumein. GIIFF has intelligently incorporated the contributions of the indigenous peoples of the world through films because they have also a similar story to tell.
I want to congratulate Ms. Freda Sideroff and her husband Dr. Stephen Sideroff on their journey with GIIFF. The Garifuna American Heritage Foundation United will always be there to support your efforts.
Garifuna International Indigenous Film Festival seeks to contribute to the public discussions about the unique cultures that enrich our great city Los Angeles and a Global community. The festival includes the highest quality documentary films that were completed in the previous years some received awards at prestigious international festivals and institutions, which draws attention to the welcomed annual Event.
The festival inspires and strengthens those who believe that diverse films from a wide variety of filmmakers engagement can bring about a true and positive Cultural stories of change and in all aspect of film making for artist to explore. Further enhancing how the cultural media is collected and preserved for future generation where it can be seen on the big screen such as the Garifuna International Indigenous Film Festival.
Clyde Gillett is the Culture Commissioner COFECA Representing Belize, Award Winning Best Belizean Filmmaker B.I.F.F. (Belize International Film Festival), Charles E Young Inductee @UCLA Library
Actress Rolanda Mendell
I love Garifuna International Indigenous Film Festival’s spotlight on preserving and promoting films of diverse cultures from around all walks of life.
Emmy Winning Actress
as Hannah Senesh
“Interrogation in Budapest”
This was a testimony of Nazim’s to our 2015 Keynote Speaker Piper Dellums.
Piper brought our audience to tears when she presented.
Such heartfelt joy meeting you this evening at the Garifuna international IndigenousFilm Festival at the Lodge in Venice. A space so aptly named given the Electric power of your words that sparked the deepest of emotional chords in us all. My Queen Celeste was streaming tears having been moved by the cellular soul of each word you uttered, as you weaved the tapestry of your narrative. We were bound as one heart to the thread of your humanity that flowed through our core visceral vortex.
Sitting a few rows behind you at the screening of our film FEMME, I could denote from your movements in the front seats, an emission of empathy at what was being projected, hoping that with each nod of your head, a sign of affirmation may have deemed concurrent with the documentary. Celeste and I so wished to have caught you before you left at the end of the screening. Indeed the heart hug we shared at the interval after your address was profound, the energy of that contact I conveyed to my beloved Celeste as she so wanted to make a direct connection with you. We hope FEMME made some an impact with you in accord with what you do in the world.