A film you must see

Last Friday our short film ‘Voices of Iraq – stories of trauma, survival and hope’ was premiered at Westminster Abbey. Comments on the film to date include:

“An incredible film capturing the real essence of the Iraqis’ plight.”

“I was so struck by the testimonies of those suffering but also by their deep faith.”

The premiere was everything we hoped it would be. A full house of influential people, great food, wonderful live music, and a first public screening of the film. Most of all it was a reminder, in the shadow of a largely indifferent Parliament, that Iraq’s persecuted Christians are not forgotten. The headlines may have changed but we are unwavering in our support for the communities we are helping.

The Revd Canon Anthony Ball welcomes guests

“We cannot survive without jobs”

The ancestral home of Iraq’s Christians in northern Iraq is scarred by numerous bomb-sites, but also by the psychological trauma of ISIS. There has been no direct support from the British government, despite pleas from senior church leaders in the region. Many are struggling to rebuild their shattered lives. We have travelled to the Christian parts of the Nineveh Plain three times so far this year. Many of those who were driven from their villages by ISIS said to us: “We cannot survive here without jobs”.

Please help save Iraq’s Christian community from extinction

To date, we have done a lot of reporting of this issue. It is now time for a practical solution. With input from church leaders and others on the ground we have devised a plan of action. It is called ‘Nineveh SEED’ – ‘Sustainable Enterprise Economic Development’. We are raising funds for a wide range of projects to help Iraqi Christians re-establish enterprises destroyed by ISIS. We want to help this ancient Christian community get back on its feet. Without jobs, their future is bleak.

The process of renewal for Iraq’s beleaguered Christians and other forgotten minorities may be long but we can make a real practical difference today. We appeal to you to support the Nineveh SEED Programme to help them at this time of great need (more information can be found on our website here).

A photograph by Alexandra Rose Howland

A big thank you

Our Voices of Iraq film is shining a spotlight on the plight of these people. The premiere was just the start of a tour of churches and other venues. Special thanks go to The Revd Canon Anthony Ball for the use of the Cellarium & Terrace at Westminster Abbey free of charge. And finally, thank you to Sam Davis and Yannick Hausler for making such a powerful film.

Artist Hannah Rose Thomas displays one of her portraits of Yazidi women

How you can see the film

If you would like to see ‘Voices of Iraq’ please get in touch – we would be happy to arrange a screening of the film in your church. All enquiries should be made to admin@frrme.org or call 01730 267 673.

Supporting our work in the Middle East

To make a donation now visit the donate page on our website (there are numerous options for how to donate). Or you can send us a cheque made out to ‘FRRME’ to: FRRME, PO Box 229, Petersfield, Hants, GU32 9DL, United Kingdom. To support our future work, please consider leaving a legacy (more info about that here). Thank you!