The Journey

A woman in a white headscarf looks through a camera, filming a seated woman in a grey headscarf. Two women stand behind the seated woman, holding a large black cloth serving as a background. Another women stands next to the filmmaker, looking on.

The Training

The 14 young women filmmakers of AFGHANISTAN UNVEILED not only received hands-on video journalism training from Kabul’s AINA Afghan Media and Culture Center, but also received mentorship opportunities from PBS, the Asia Foundation and the U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council. Read more about the organizations that made the film possible.

AINA Afghan Media and Culture Center

Co-founded by acclaimed photojournalist Reza Deghati and several French journalists, the AINA Afghan Media and Culture Center supports democracy in Afghanistan through increased media and cultural expression. AINA’s one-year training course for the filmmakers of AFGHANISTAN UNVEILED took place between July 2002 and August 2003. Since then, the filmmakers have completed several news reports for French, German and Finnish television and two one-hour documentary films: AFGHANISTAN UNVEILED and Shadows, also about women’s rights in Afghanistan. They are currently working on their third documentary, which will focus on Afghan women in politics. AINA has been further developed as a production company for some of the camerawomen to continue their work, producing regular news reports and short programs for Afghan media.

The Asia Foundation

The Asia Foundation—a non-governmental organization active in Asia since 1954—with funding from the U.S. Department of State, Bureau for South Asian Affairs and the Office of Public Diplomacy, provided support for the filmmakers’ training and the transportation costs for conducting their interviews around the country. The Foundation also provided an oral history specialist, Shaista Wahab, an Afghan American professor at the University of Nebraska, as a consultant to the project. Additional donors for AFGHANISTAN UNVEILED included United States Agency for International Development, UNESCO, the International Organization for Migration and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland.

PBS / U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council

PBS has also helped to mentor the AFGHANISTAN UNVEILED filmmakers through the work of President and CEO Pat Mitchell and the U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council, which is comprised of leaders of government, business and the media from both countries. PBS provided the team with professional production equipment and a small library of programming, and gave filmmakers Gul Makai Rangebar and Jamila Emami an in-depth look at the American media production process when they visited the United States in July 2003, with the assistance of the U.S. Department of State. As Mitchell says, “These women have shown tremendous drive and initiative in the production of AFGHANISTAN UNVEILED, but I am certain that this is only the beginning.”


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