“Filming in Humbjire certainly stands out as one of the most rewarding experiences,” film-maker Fernando Sapelli recounts, “It was fulfilling to obtain people’s opinions about GHEI, further confirming the efficiency of its work.”
Born and raised in Brazil, Sapelli completed his degree in Film & Media Studies and Dramatic Arts at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Since then, he has worked in production companies like Leonardo diCaprio's Appian Way and Sony Pictures Television. In 2010, he embarked on the 7-month “People of Change” project which took him to 16 countries recording the work of select NGOs in 10-15 minute documentary-style films. Sapelli heard about GHEI while filming in South Africa and immediately agreed to include GHEI in the project: “I tried to focus on different types of NGOs. GHEI had projects assisting both education and health deficiencies, and [it] had a very specific manner of conducting [its] work. Few are the organizations who try to employ and train locally, as opposed to having an ongoing dependency on foreign expertise.” Sapelli filmed the GHEI documentary in May 2010, before returning to the US to edit and produce the film.
Sapelli is currently working with Oscar-nominated producer Hank Levine on a new documentary, entitled "Refugee Diaries," about people who are displaced because of their political or religious beliefs or their sexual orientation.
Reflecting on his time with GHEI, Sapelli recounts, “The people are what made it original. From GHEI's staff to their families, everyone was warmhearted and welcoming. We shared smiles, stories, moments. And those are the memories I've carried with me.”
Click here to watch the GHEI documentary.
For more information on Fernando Sapelli and his “People of Change” project, visit his website http://fernandosapelli.com/
--Natalie Rich, GHEI Communications Director