Arthouse Jersey commissions filmmaker to follow ‘Compassion for Refugees’

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Documentary ‘A Home to Another’ by Luke Romo Hodges to be released in Spring 2021. 

Inspired by the kindness of three islanders who recently travelled to France to deliver aid to refugees over the Christmas period, ​ArtHouse Jersey ​commissioned filmmaker Luke Romo Hodges ​to join them and document some of the stories they encountered along the way.

The result will be a short film titled ​‘A Home To Another’ ​which will be released on ​ArtHouse Jersey Presents​ in Spring 2021.

In August of last year Alcindo Pinto, Jo Fry and her son Joseph announced that they were giving Christmas in Jersey a miss, and instead would collect and deliver aid to refugees in Dunkirk, Calais and Paris.

Pinto said at the time, ​“​It’s been a hard year for everybody, so it must have been a total nightmare if you are stateless, desperate and living in a tent in a foreign country that doesn’t want you there. So Jo Fry and I have set ourselves a Christmas mission. We aim to hire a van, fill it with donations of useful items and drive it to refugee centres in France where we will work for two weeks and hopefully rent a place where we can offer people a bed and the chance to live in a house for a few days at least.”

The trio set up a GoFundMe campaign, soon well exceeding their target of £5,000. They took the money raised and an overwhelming amount of much-needed items for the camps (donated by people in Jersey) over to France on 18 December. They passed through numerous refugee camps on the French north coast, bringing aid to those living in tents and on the streets in Calais, Dunkirk and finally Paris.

When Jersey filmmaker ​Luke Romo Hodges​, who had been based in the UEA, told ArtHouse Jersey ​of his plans to return to Europe and settle in Paris, we recognised the opportunity to connect Luke with the Jersey party. From there they set about commissioning him to help tell the story of what they came across along the way.

As well as documenting Alcindo, Jo and Joseph’s mission, this was a chance to help tell the stories of those who have had to leave their own countries behind and settle in the harsh conditions of French outdoor camps for the displaced.

Director of ArtHouse Jersey, Tom Dingle, said ​“There are hundreds of thousands of stateless people in France alone, desperately awaiting asylum, and it is these people’s experiences that are central to this commission. The most exciting projects often come from serendipitous moments where collaboration becomes possible. This was one such example. We have admired the work of Luke Hodges for some time, both atmospherically and stylistically, and the chance to connect him, not only to the efforts of this admirable group of Jersey people, but to the bigger refugee crisis story is something we are glad to have been able to do. It’s my hope that ‘A Home To Another’ will shine just a little bit of light on the extremely difficult circumstances these people face while demonstrating just how far small acts of kindness can go”.

Filmmaker Luke Romo Hodges said ​“When ArtHouse Jersey offered me this opportunity, I had no clue what I was about to embark on. Working in cinema sometimes makes you forget that the stories we tell ourselves are actually the realities of others. We’ve been driven to remain the spectators of our world instead of taking part. I think this film is really about this understanding.”

Keep an eye out on ArtHouse Jersey Presents for the release in the coming months. 

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