With our new office in the Netherlands close to Brussels,
we will officially serve as the BENELUX
liaison for the Centre for
International Development and Training (CIDT) of the University of Wolverhampton.
We are also expanding our
services and expertise to training
and consultancy. Environmental
documentary production will remain our core service. However, in recent years
we have extended our services to training for example in audiovisual
communication and the use of digital video for development and action
research. Increasingly, we delivered services in teaching media and
communication at higher educational level for MSc and PhD students as well as
Next to that we have as
well been involved in consultancies such as our expert service for the
EU-funded FOGGARA project led by IPOGEA for the last 3 years.
“The Beloved Ones” released and ready to be screened
at the Cannes
Short Film corner in May
Our latest short film is
released in March and produced with support of the UK-Filmcouncil agency Screen
West Midlands. It is now registered for the Cannes Short Film Corner in May
2007. “The Beloved Ones” is an
animated documentary directed by renowned animator Samantha Moore from Shrewsbury and produced
by Joshka Wessels. The film tells
the stories of two African women living with the repercussions of HIV/AIDS in
a compelling and intimate portrait. 16 year-old Maureen survives with her
only sister after she lost her parents. HIV positive Anna is preparing her
children for her own eminent death. The film weaves their emotive stories
together in a visual narrative. Well-known UK actresses Josette Simon, OBE
(Blake’s 7) and Lenora Crichlow (Sugar Rush, Ch4) voiced the main characters
of the film.
“Nor any Drop to Drink” released and
to be screened this June at an opening ceremony with HRM King Abdullah of Jordan
Sapiens Productions has released its latest environmental documentary
called “Nor Any Drop to Drink”.
Four filmmakers from Jordan,
Egypt and Palestine find out how
local people and institutions on the ground work together in solving the
water scarcity. The film is made in close collaboration and with support of
the International water and Sanitation Centre (IRC) and the Empowers
partnership and Zer0-M project.
It is distributed by the Television trust for the Environment (TVE).
Its first screening in the region will take place in April during the
MEDA-water partners conference in Tunisia. In Amman, Jordan,
the film will shown during the opening ceremony of the “Water is everybody’s
business” forum in June, 2007. This high profile event will bring together
water experts from all over the world to discuss local water governance and
policies for the Middle East.
“Above Board” DVD distributed to more than 5000
The DVD called “Above
Board” was distributed to more than 5000 viewers worldwide in December 2006.
The DVD produced for CIDT and DFID aims to inform timber traders about the
benefits of legal timber trade. The DVD was made in collaboration with TVE
who provided archive footage and endorsed by the Timber Trade Federation.
Using digital video for Process Documentation of the
SWITCH project, upcoming training in Lodz, Poland
July 2007, Sapiens Productions will lead the training component on using
digital video for process documentation to stakeholders of the SWITCH
project. The objective of the training workshop on ‘Process documentation for
learning alliances and action research’ is to equip participants with the
necessary skills to undertake high-quality and innovative documentation of
learning and change processes. The SWITCH project aims to achieve a paradigm
shift in urban water management to get sustainable, healthy and safe urban
water systems. SWITCH is a consortium of 32 organisations from 13 countries
under coordination of UNESCO-IHE in partnership with the European Union - DG
This paradigm shift will be
realized by a consortium of 32 organisations from 13 countries under
coordination of UNESCO-IHE in partnership with the European Union - DG
Nepalese and Bhutanese scientists
get to grips with digital video in Wageningen, the Netherlands
In December 2006, a group
of Nepalese and Bhutanese forestry professionals got to grips with a digital
video camera for use in their work at their respective Forestry Institutes.
For CIDT we delivered a short training course on the use of digital video for
Quality Assurance and project/ programme documentation within the framework
of the EU-funded AsiaLink programme.
Another successful Media and
Communication unit for the Chevening Course by CIDT, Wolverhampton, UK
For the second time in a
row Joshka Wessels led this year’s
Media and Communication unit for the Chevening course on “Environmental
Democracy and Governance” given by the CIDT at the University of
Wolverhampton (UK). The unit was delivered together with communication
specialist Tag McEntegart. The module guided the Chevening Fellows, who are
supported by the British Council, through the practicalities of devising an
environmental communication strategy. The Chevening Course takes place at
CIDT annually from January until March. The students all expressed that they
had learned a lot during the unit and enjoyed the mix of theory and above all
Meeting in Florence decides on
publication of the FOGGARA Project
the past three years, Joshka Wessels
has been serving as a consultant expert for the EU-funded project FOGGARA led
by IPOGEA, Italy.
The project aims to maintain and revitalize the
ancient technique of drainage
tunnels in the Mediterranean through
innovative solutions. For this project she has travelled to the partner
countries Spain, Morocco, Algeria
since 2004. A final meeting last February decided to publish the results and
outcomes of the FOGGARA project by mid-2007. Also a DVD will be produced by
Sapiens Productions to show various tunnel sites in the partner countries.
DVD on legal timber trade”
“ABOVE BOARD, trading legal timber” is to be distributed
to critical players in the field of policy and regulation on worldwide timber
trade. CIDT and TVE announced that they are going to start the
worldwide distribution of this DVD that has appeared in 8 different
languages; English, French, German, Spanish, Dutch, Japanese and special
versions of Chinese and Russian. Copies of the DVD are free of charge and can
be ordered at email@example.com.
anniversary of FLAKES contribution !”
one year, Joshka Wessels takes
part in an innovative web-based visual art project called FLAKES. She has been taken a digital picture
every day of her personal life and posted it on the web. Flakes is an
experiment in expressing identity. All the participating artists frame their
daily existence through the lens of a camera and share these images to
celebrate times passed.
Shropshire features work of Joshka Wessels
on local TV and the web”
The local TV of Shropshire, the beautiful county
where Sapiens Productions is based, has featured some of the work of Joshka Wessels on their trial of local digital
television. Check out the feature with director’s comments on her various
films on BBC
productions ventures into interactive DVD production”
Sapiens productions has been commissioned to
produce the UK
version of a DVD on illegal timber trade for the Department of International
Development (DFID-UK) in collaboration with CIDT and TVE. 5000 copies are to
be distributed in spring 2006.
“Tunnel Vision wins award at Czech Film
Festival ³Water, Sea & the Oceans, 2005”
The TVE Earth Report Documentary
"Tunnel Vision" Produced by Sapiens Productions has won the Prize
of the North Bohemian Research Library at the International
Filmfestival "Water, Sea & the Oceans", 2005
“ON AIR: Darfur, Earth, Wind and Fire”
humanitarian crisis in Darfur is said to be
the biggest in the world today. More than 2.4 million people are hungry and
some 1.8 million people are displaced. The Sudanese province of the size of France
is still deeply entrenched in a complex civil war. Animals, both wild and
domestic, have fled or died, the landscape is bare. What is often not covered
is that Darfur has known a steady decrease
in rainfall over the past 40 years with an unprecedented population growth
and a man-made desertification that is creeping South. Competition over land
and water between farmers and nomads grew tenser year by year. Was this a
breeding ground for the current conflict?
In this programme, Earth Report goes behind the frontlines in Darfur,
travelling into rebel-controlled areas to explore the relationship between
the current Darfur crisis and the continuing
impoverishment of the environment.
This film was made available
throught the Zayed Foundation Award to EARTH REPORT provided via
Television Trust for the Environment (TVE) www.tve.org
of Music” at BBC Big Screen Summer film Festival Birmingham
This month of June every weekday and Saturday at 10:00 a.m.,
BBC Big Screen will show our short-film “Solace of Music” about the struggle of Henry in Uganda
who survives after loosing his father to HIV/AIDS. He is now coping with the
news that his mother is found HIV positive. He finds solace in his music.
Sapiens productions’ crew is in Darfur,
Sudan to film
a television documentary about the ecological roots to the conflict. We will
report for BBC radio Shropshire from El Fasher, the capital of North Darfur.
23 November 2004
Hand-On Series Green Currents will be broadcast
on 27 November on BBC News 24 and 29 November on BBC World. "Fishing for
Litter" and "Finnish the Water" are two short films in the
series that were directed and produced by Sapiens Productions.
18 November 2004
For the second consecutive year, Sapiens
Productions together with Vista Foundation and The Amsterdam Institute for
Global Issues and Development Studies of the University of Amsterdam
gave an intensive course on the use of Digital Video for International
Development Studies from 8-18 November. The course was attended by 6 PhD
students of the Dutch CERES research group before they set off to do their
fieldwork in various developing countries.
04 November 2004
As of Friday 05 November, the short film Solace
of Music will be shown on the BBC Big Screen at Chamberlain Square, Birmingham.
"The Solace of Music" is part of the film "River of Hope"
produced by Sapiens Productions.
18 October 2004
The film "Tunnel Vision" has won the
Skoda General Partner Award on the 30th Edition of the International Film
Festival on the Environment and Natural and Cutlural Heritage "EKO
film". The prize was given to the Director Joshka
Wessels during a prize giving ceremony on 9th October in Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic.
26 August 2004
There are some upcoming festivals and they are
showing films from Sapiens Productions !
"The Solace of Music" can be seen at:
Second TIC Short Digital Film Festival
13th and 14th September 2004
The thinktank theatre at Birmingham’s Millennium Point
"Tunnel Vision" has been selected for
two festivals and can be seen at:
The Ninth International Environmental Film
Festival "Green Vision"
21-24 September 2004
30th International Film Festival on the
Environment and Natural Cultural Heritage "EKOFILM 2004"
4-10 October 2004
"Marooned" can be seen as well at:
30th International Film Festival on the
Environment and Natural Cultural Heritage "EKOFILM 2004"
4-10 October 2004
19 July 2004
The Syrian Qanat project in the news with a radio
interview on site in
Swiss Info Website
Some reactions on the film “River of Hope”
Child-to –Child fund
The general conclusion was that this was a good
production that can serve its intended audiences and functions as
facilitating tools . there is a quality to this film that may make it a good
tool to support advocacy in certain areas with people at policy/decision
making levels and raise the awareness about actual realities, extend the
vision of professionals about integral approaches, demonstrate the high
potential at community level to maintain some form of normalcy.
We felt that the children were really great and
were pleased to see a video made from their perspective. It is refreshinh to
hear children’s voices and see situations through their eyes without
interpretation by adult voices/actors. We also liked the use of a river
as analogous of the life story. We liked the way the video was split into
sections and felt this added clarity to the messages of each part.
20 April 2004
Some reactions on the film “Marooned”
It is very GOOD ... Well scripted and
clearly presented. In fact it is the best multi-faceted synoptic
presentation I have seen on Suriname
to date. A splendid overview of the situation here - and it's a fact,
perhaps only you, with your sympathies and insights could have done so much
in 23 short minutes. Congratulations to you and Robert Lamb - a
splendid job well done.
Cornelli Olivieri was mentioned on the Earth
Report about Surinam
night, the 23 march on BBC World.
Could you please pass on a short note of
congratulations and thanks.
Thanks for being the inspiration to carry on the
work of trying to do
something to make the world a better place. I am
working for marine
ecosystems and fish populations but I have found
a lot of strength over
time in the women's entrepreneurial world and her
courage and determination were a strong burst of
energy into my life
As someone who has seen the destruction of
Malaysian and Indonesian
tropical rainforest first hand, and from a young
age, and experienced
primary rainforest up close also, I truly hope Surinam holds
longer term gain of keeping their
rainforests. Send some government
types to Papua New
Guinea or Malaysia
and show them what
results when cyanide damages rivers, hills erode
and the forests are
gone. The people are a lot poorer in the long
Again, thank you
Kia Kaha Toa Wahine (Which is Maori for Stand
strong, strong Women. I
am from New Zealand)
After watching your program entitled 'Marooned'
on BBC world on the
23rd March 2004, and after following up research
on both the BBC world
and your websites, I was wondering whether you
would be able to send
me contact details for Ms Monique Essed-Fernandes.
I read with much
interest her report entitled: The Government of
Suriname and China
Zhong Heng Tai Investment Company - Strategy
Briefing for a
Comprehensive Oil Palm Exploration Agreement
I would also very like to contact the Chinese company
Zhong Heng Tai Investment Company.
I have a great interest in the timber industry
and protecting the
world forests from exploitation, and your report
really did grab my
attention, and I would like to discuss the issues
in it with both Ms
Monique Essed-Fernandes and representatives from
China Zhong Heng Tai
Thanks you for a great program.
Kind regards and thanks
I'm a civil engineer and worked on a gold mine in
got Buhemba Gold mine up and running..I happened to watch your program about
Gold mines in Suriname
and was wondering why don't these firms starting up mines there..issue shares
so that locals can have a stake in operation..as a lot of resistance arises
when locals feel that they are born in a mineral rich country but don't have
a chance to share in its wealth..my opinion
Anyway I left Tanzania to return to do further
studies...I strongly feel
whether the locals can raise cash for shares issued
or not..they should be given the chance
Congratulations! Excellent coverage. Clearly, the
forest people should be allowed to maintain their environment as best they
can. Economic development really has no place with such pure people.
As it may be necessary for them to survive
industries should be encouraged.
They should have some education about
architecture and the
history of agriculture, architecture and art from
the West and the rest of the world and be exposed to visions of Western
development to strengthen their resolve (unfortunately)
When you come to a place and a people as pure,
and welcoming there is no place for interference
of any form, unless
survival is brought into question. Vanity,
excessive profit and industrialization are inappropriate, ancient or
of ownership in such societies is valid.
David J Madden
I saw the film on BBC News 24. A very
interesting introduction to a part of the world I know nothing about.
Professor Carole Rakodi
International Development Department
School of Public Policy
University of Birmingham
18 March 2004
A compilation from the film "River of Hope"
will be screened 25th March 2004 at the "home grown"
programme series at the Old Market Hall Cinema, a newly established Digital
Media Centre in the Old town of Shrewsbury.
16 March 2004
The film "Marooned" to be broadcast to
more than 200 million viewers worldwide at BBC News24, BBC One and BBC World
! World and UK
20 March 2004: BBCNews24 16:30 p.m. GMT;
21st March 2004: BBC One 05:30 a.m. GMT “Marooned” will
appear 5 times on BBC World in the week of March 22-28 in the award winning
Earth Report series of Television Trust for the Environment (TVE). For latest
information check out TVE’s website www.tve.org. Earth Report is
broadcast weekly on BBC World at the following times GMT: Mon 22:30; Tue
02:30, 09:30, 17:30; Sat 19:30; Sun 07:30 Please note: Broadcasts vary in
different parts of the world. Check details for your region at www.bbcworld.com
11 December 2003
OneWorld TV in collaboration with MTV broadcasts
“Moureens’ Memorybook” a PSA produced by Sapiens Productions on the struggle
of African children who lost their parents to HIV/AIDS to survive in the poor
rural areas. Please visit One World
01 December 2003
Journeyman Pictures, London's
leading independent distributor of topical news features
and documentaries has announced our 52-minute documentary
"Little Waterfall" about ancient water tunnels in Syria as Film
of the Week. See www.journeyman.tv/
24 November 2003
"David Morley, a man with vision"
Charity Infomercial about Teaching-aids At Low Costs (TALC) Planned
Broadcast: The Community Channel. A personal portrait of David Morley, the
founder of Teaching-aids At Low Costs (TALC), a UK-based Charity that
provides and distributes teaching equipment for students, doctors and health
workers in developing countries worldwide.
20 November 2003
Sapiens Productions received a commission for an
Earth Report called "Wholesale
Television Trust for the Environment (TVE)
Planned Broadcast: BBC World, News24 and BBC One.
A film about the beautiful country Surinam.
Located in the Amazonian basin and with 90% of its landsurface still
covered with the most pristine rainforest on Earth, it is truly a nature
lovers' Paradise.....but covetous eyes are staring at it......Watch this
23 September 2003
From 10-17 September, Sapiens Productions
together with Vista Foundation and The Amsterdam Institute for Global Issues
and Development Studies of the University
of Amsterdam gave an
intensive course on the use of Digital Video for International Development
Studies. The course was attended by 10 PhD students of the Dutch CERES
research group before they set off to do their fieldwork in various
16 August 2003
The Sapiens Production Crew is currently filming
a former Dutch colony. This tugged away country on the south American
continent has a tremendous wealth in biodiversity covered with 90%
pristine rainforest. The four yearly Carifesta Festival is
happening in the capital, Paramaribo.
For seven days, all Caribbean countries come
together to celebrate the cultural diversity of this part of the world. Also
we’re filming issues on logging threat by a dodgy Chinese multinational as
opposed to sustainable use of the forest and voices that are speaking out
against this non-selective logging.
07 July 2003
The film "Little Waterfall" has
received a special commendation at the RAI Ethnographic Film Festival. From
4-6 July, the prestigious filmfestival of the Royal Anthropological Institute
took place at Durham University,
In the category “Material Culture and Archaeology”, the film “Little
Waterfall” won a commendation of the jury. Courageous filming, beautiful
sequences and charisma of the main character well impressed the jury that
stated that “the love and passion for cultural heritage is very well
displayed in the message of the film”. More information
17 June 2003
I think the CCATH video is SUPERB. It is really
powerful and allows the children and adults to speak for themselves. I
find it intensely moving - and a brilliant and sensitive piece of
anthropological work - and excellent editing.
Rachel Carnegie, Healthlink Worldwide
02 June 03
CONGRATULATIONS FOR THE TUNNEL VISION FILM!
I watched it the other evening and found it
EXCELLENT! And the prominent
role of Sister Agnes was a funny surprise, just
after having visited her.
Pedro van Zwahlen
Swiss Embassy Damascus
17 April 2003
DEAR JOSHKA - I WATCHED TUNNELVISION GO OUT LAST
NIGHT. BOT TVE AND
THE BBC ARE WELL PLEASED WITH THIS FILM.
ROBERT LAMB, Executive Producer TVE
16 April 2003
After the halted broadcast due to the war on Iraq, BBC
world had decided it
was timely that the Earth Report programme
"Tunnel Vision" is broadcast TODAY. On
short notice BBC World gave the following days
Thursday 17th April @ 16:30
Friday 18th April @ 12:30
Sunday 20th April @ 10:30
11 April 2003
We are both so delighted with the way the CCATH
video has developed. You have done a superb job - which only an
anthropologist film maker could achieve. We are extremely fortunate to have
you for this task. I really look forward to working with you on its completion.
Rachel Carnegie & Christiana Brown
14 March 03
Sapiens Productions is happy to announce the
broadcast on BBC World of TVE's Earth Report "Tunnel Vision" as
output of the project on the scientific documentary of Qanats in Syria.
the first broadcast will take place on 25th March 2003 at 11:30
a.m.Please, check www.bbcworld.com for latest listings.