Film producer discusses mini-series

first_imgPart four of the five part documentary mini-series, titled “Women, War and Peace,” aired Tuesday on PBS. The series, which focuses on women’s roles in warfare, was produced in part by Nina Chaundry, who spoke on a panel Tuesday about the documentaries. “The creators of the series, Pamela Hogan, Abigail Disney and Gini Reticker, first met about the project in the fall of 2007,” Chaundry said. “They had each individually noticed a similar trend in reporting: a focus on the men and the guns and a dearth of stories about the women and families who are disproportionately targeted in today’s conflict zones — but seldom covered in news reports.” Chaundry said the idea for the film series was born after this conversation. “Disproportionate attention has been paid to men in conflict, and we hope that this series is the beginning of a dialogue and that more films and more reporting will look at conflict through women’s eyes,” she said. When choosing the stories to tell in the documentary, she said the producers and filmmakers wanted to give underreported stories the attention they deserve. “Deciding which conflicts to cover was one of the most difficult decisions we had to make,” she said. “We researched stories around the world, including Asia, Central America, Chechnya, Georgia, Israel and Palestine, Northern Ireland, Congo, Sudan, Guinea as well as the stories in Bosnia, Colombia and Afghanistan.” After all their research was collected, the filmmakers decided to tell the story of how war had changed in the last 20 years since the end of the Cold War, Chaundry said. “Since the end of the Cold War, it has become more dangerous to be a woman in a conflict zone than a soldier,” she said. The filmmakers wanted to make sure to demonstrate this was a global occurrence, Chaundry said. They did this by committing to covering as many regions of the world as they could. The films focused on four countries, with a final piece tying all the themes together and discussing how war has changed in a post-Cold War world. “I Came to Testify,” the first episode of the mini-series, told the story of how 16 Bosnian women testified against their rapists in international court. “We decided on Bosnia, because it was the first time that women were successful in getting rape prosecuted as a war crime, setting a major precedent in international law which is now being used globally,” Chaundry said. She said the process of finding and interviewing the women for “I Came to Testify” was a very delicate process. “Filmmaker Pamela Hogan and her associate producer Jessie Beauchaine initially reached out to the investigators and prosecutors that the women had trusted from The Hague,” Chaundry said. “When Hogan and Beauchaine first met the women, they then had to gain their trust, which was no easy task.” The women did not particularly want to talk to journalists and even suffered from headaches and other physical ills because telling their story is so traumatizing, Chaundry said. Chaundry said building relationships with these women was difficult, but a journalist’s emotions can help build trust and rapport. “As journalists we are charged with being objective storytellers, but it’s impossible to check your emotions, especially when you are covering such intimate stories,” she said. “In fact, I find it’s important to allow yourself to have the emotions. It’s essential for building trust and rapport with the people you are filming.” The second week’s episode, “Pray the Devil Back to Hell,” was a film already made by Abigail Disney. “We already knew that the series would include ‘Pray the Devil Back to Hell,’ the story of the women who came together and brought an end to the civil war in Liberia,” Chaundry said. Week three’s episode, “Peace Unveiled,” focused on Afghanistan, where the filmmakers tell the story of female activists. “We felt obligated as Americans to tell the story of women in a conflict in which we were directly involved,” she said. Filming in Afghanistan posed some very real security problems, especially in the Kandahar region when interviewing women’s rights activist Shahida Hussein, Chaundry said. “We exercised extreme caution in that case and respected the wishes of the activist Shahida Hussein,” she said. “At one point in the filming, she asked that she be filmed by an Afghan male who could then appear to others as a male relative and would then not draw too much attention to her or her family. At another time, she wanted a woman to film with her and we even experimented filming from behind the burqa!” While there were specific threats against the activists in Afghanistan, safety was a concern almost everywhere the mini-series was filmed, Chaundry said. “Threats were already a part of the daily lives of several of the women we feature in the series and I’m not sure if the threats intensified as a result of our filming, but we were aware throughout production — and even now — that it was a possibility,” she said. “The courage these women have shown in their lives and in sharing their stories with us is a responsibility that the entire team feels and one that we take very seriously.” The fourth episode in the series, “The War We are Living,” focuses on a conflict in Colombia, which has displaced more people than any other place in the world, other than the Sudan, Chaundry said. “In Colombia, as in the rest of the world, the majority of the internally displaced people are women and their dependents,” she said. Throughout the filming process, the filmmakers wanted to make sure the women were not just portrayed as victims, Chaundry said. In many cases women are usually seen as such, and their work towards peace is undermined. “All of these women are taking personal risks, risks that jeopardize not only themselves but also their children and extended families,” she said.last_img read more

Virus alert

first_imgBy Brad HaireUniversity of GeorgiaTomato spotted wilt virus hurts many crops in Georgia. But its severity varies from year to year. University of Georgia scientists are developing an alert to help vegetable farmers know how bad it will be each year before they plant.”If a grower knew how bad TSWV might be before transplanting in the spring, he could make some management decisions that could save money or better protect the crop,” said David Riley, an entomologist with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.Since appearing in Georgia in the late-1980s, TSWV has cost Georgia farmers hundreds of millions of dollars in damage to crops like peanuts, tobacco, peppers and tomatoes.The carrierTSWV is carried by tiny insects called thrips. They get the virus when they feed on infected plants. When they leave those plants, they can carry the virus to healthy ones. Millions of thrips per acre can visit a field in a year.Prevention is the only “cure” for the virus. Once a plant gets it, it will grow poorly or die.Thrips’ populations drastically decline in winter. But a few, Riley said, retreat to the weeds that surround fields. They survive there until spring and then return, possibly with the virus, to freshly planted vegetables.In the weedsStarting last summer, Riley and other CAES scientists began an extensive survey of weeds and thrips numbers in Brooks, Colquitt, Decatur and Tift counties. A large portion of Georgia’s vegetable crop is grown in these counties. Each month, weed samples are taken from two field sites in each county.They want to know if weeds near the fields have TSWV and if thrips are feeding and reproducing on these weeds. They will focus on the data taken in February and March.High numbers of samples with TSWV and thrips at this time will indicate a high risk for the spread of the virus. If this happens, an alert will be issued.With this information, farmers can decide how best to protect their crops in the spring. “This can be another tool and service we can provide that farmers can use to know what to expect,” he said.Farmers can help. They can fill gallon-size plastic bags with weeds, particularly chickweed, cudweed, sow thistle, swine cress and Carolina geranium, from around fields planted with peppers or tomatoes. They can submit samples to their county UGA Extension Service agent or contact Stan Diffie at (229) 386-3374.Warm winter weather tends to increase thrips populations, Riley said. He’s noticed a correlation, too, between the tree pollen amounts and thrips populations.Thrips like to eat, among other things, pine tree pollen. “The increase and decrease of pollen seem to mirror the increase and decrease of thrips populations each year,” Riley said.ProtectionTo protect crops, vegetable farmers spend extra money on TSWV-resistant crop varieties and insecticidal sprays to control thrips, he said.Many Georgia vegetables are grown in fields of raised beds wrapped in plastic film, mostly black. This helps farmers better control the crop environment.Some farmers have started using more expensive reflective metallic film. Many believe it disorients thrips and keeps them from landing on crops’ leaves.Forecast tools exist for other crops. One developed by North Carolina State University predicts each year the possible severity of blue mold, a fungus that attacks tobacco. And research by CAES scientists has shown that Doppler radar can help peanut farmers know when to effectively apply fungicides.last_img read more

Drink Water

first_imgKeep a refillable water bottle with you. The cutest water bottles are available now — you can even get them monogrammed! You are more likely to refill your water bottle if you actually have it with you.Make water the only choice. A number of times, my husband and I have made water the only beverage choice in our home. I stopped purchasing sodas and limit juice. As if by magic — “Mom magic,” if you will — water is consumed regularly and in large amounts.If you are not crazy about the taste of plain water, try infused water by adding lemon, lime or in-season berries. It’s delicious, beautiful and you will be doing your body a favor.Begin each day with a glass of water. I find it wakes up my system and keeps things moving. I also drink one glass of water before and after drinking sweet tea (my absolute favorite).When dining out, try ordering water as your drink with your entrée. It’s also economical. Have you glanced at the price of the average beverage in restaurants lately? My children tell me, “Momma, you always order water.” I often joke that I cannot afford to buy drinks for all of us.Eating foods with high moisture content can also assist you in getting your daily water intake. I love watermelon, and, like most fruits and vegetables, it is comprised mostly of water. It’s also in season, so eat up. It’s July in Georgia and that means one thing: heat. According to the Weather Channel, we’ve had average temperatures hovering at 90 degrees Fahrenheit or higher since the beginning of summer, and there seems to be no end in sight for high temperatures.Whether cooking out, going to the amusement park, mowing the lawn or working in the garden, Georgians spend more time outside sweating in the summer. University of Georgia Cooperative Extension agents like me are here to remind you to drink your daily serving of water. When I was a child, my auntie sounded like a broken record telling me, even threatening me, to drink water.Some members of our community, namely seniors, may require more water to keep hydrated. As we age we may not recognize the symptoms of dehydration as quickly. I know it can be a challenge to get Papa or Granny to drink water, but it’s imperative to their health. Give them the infamous speech: “This is going to hurt you more than it does me…”According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, water is essential for good health. Water has a number of functions for our bodies. It regulates body temperature, removes waste and protects our bones and joints. It also protects us from a variety of heat-related illnesses, such as dehydration, when your body loses water faster than it should. Heat is a contributing factor to dehydration. The signs of dehydration include dry mouth, dizziness, headache, weakness and fatigue. UGA Extension encourages Georgians to stay hydrated while working and playing in the summer heat by following these tips: Be safe and stay hydrated, Georgia.last_img read more

Evelyn Genece Jones, 98, Wellington: Sept. 12, 1916 – July 21, 2015

first_imgA memorial has been established with the First United Methodist Church. Contributions can be left at the funeral home. Evelyn Genece JonesEvelyn Genece Jones, age 98, died Tuesday evening, July 21, 2015 at her daughter’s home in Wellington. She was a homemaker and had been a resident of Wellington since 1942.Evelyn Genece (Wood) Jones was born on September 12, 1916 in Grenola, KS to J. J. Wood and Mollie (Tindale) Wood.Genece married Kenneth L. Jones on May 20, 1937 in Monahans, TX. He preceded her in death in 2000.Genece will be remembered for her strong faith and love for her church and also for her dedication to family and friends.She was preceded in death by her husband; parents; two brothers; three sisters; son-in-law, Ross Richards; and nephew, Daniel Grandin.Survivors include Don (Sheryl) Jones of Arvada, CO, Shari Richards of Wellington, Tom (Laure) Grandin of Louisville, CO; Peggy Lamm of Grand Junction, CO and Mary (Steve) Meeker of Wellington; grandchildren, Scott (Cindy) Jones, Steven Jones, Megan (James) Ginter, Craig (Melissa) Meeker, and Danny Lamm; great grandchildren, Erik, Matthew, Michael and Jacob Jones, Payton, Claire, and Harper Ginter, Laney and Allie Meeker.Funeral Services will be held at the First United Methodist Church on Saturday, July 25, 2015 at 10:30 a.m. Pastor Brent Clayton will officiate. Interment will follow the service at Prairie Lawn Cemetery.Visitation will be held at the funeral home on Friday, July 24, 2015 from 1 to 8 p.m. The family will be present to greet friends from 6:30 — 8 p.m. Frank Funeral Home has been entrusted with the arrangements.center_img To leave condolences or sign our guest book, please visit our website at www.frankfuneralhome.netlast_img read more