Monday, October 18, 2010 - 6:00pm

Welcoming Colorado Prompts Community Discussion through Preview of New Film

Aurora, Colorado – At a time when many U.S. communities are exploding with tension around immigration and religion, grassroots and faith leaders in a southeastern Tennessee community are about to tell a different story. Welcome to Shelbyville, a new documentary about how residents in their town have worked to understand, challenge, and accept new immigrants, will be the focus of a community screening and dialogue. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. Free admission and refreshments.

Changing demographics are an issue across the country and especially in communities like Original Aurora.  Learn what is being done to create more welcoming communities and what efforts are underway to build stronger communities for everyone. The event is part of a nationwide tour held in partnership with Welcoming America and Active Voice in association with the BeCause Foundation.

Set against the backdrop of a shaky economy, Welcome to Shelbyville takes an intimate look at a southern town as its residents – whites and African-Americans, Latinos and Somalis – grapple with their beliefs, their histories and their evolving ways of life. Welcome to Shelbyville is directed and produced by Kim A. Snyder and executive produced by BeCause Foundation in association with Active Voice.

The documentary is the centerpiece of Shelbyville Multimedia, a set of digital and “on the ground” tools that will use the characters’ experiences to support productive approaches to the nation’s changing demographics.

Welcome to Shelbyville will be broadcast on ITVS’s Independent Lens in the spring of 2011. 

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Welcoming Colorado seeks to strengthen our state by giving immigrant and non-immigrant communities a chance to break down barriers, share experiences and correct misinformation.

Welcoming America is a national, grassroots-driven collaborative that works to promote mutual respect and cooperation between foreign-born and U.S.-born Americans. www.welcomingamerica.org.

Kim Snyder is an award-winning filmmaker whose most recent film, Welcome to Shelbyville, is recipient of a Gucci-Tribeca Documentary Fund grant, a selection of the U.S. State Department's 2010 American Documentary Showcase, and will air on PBS's Independent Lens in early 2011.  

BeCause Foundation ignites social change through the powerful fusion of documentary filmmaking and creative outreach and engagement projects. www.becausefoundation.net

Active Voice uses film, television and multimedia to put a human face on the issues of our times. www.activevoice.net

Shelbyville Multimedia is funded in part by the Ford Foundation, Unbound Philanthropy, Carnegie Corporation of New York and Andrus Family Fund.

Contact Information: 

Jordan T. Garcia, AFSC Immigrant Ally Organizing Director, 303.623.3464

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