Last night, Anne-Lise & I attended a benefit screening for the Educational Video Center (EVC) at the IFC Center in NYC. The EVC is a workshop where high-school kids from some of the rougher parts of New York come to learn documentary filmmaking. Working in small groups, led by a mentor (typically a professional documentary filmmaker), the kids produce films that speak about issues in their world. At the screening, we saw excerpts of the films Alienated (about undocument teen immigrants facing life after high school with no options for legalized work or college), All That I Can Be (a story of a teen who makes the choice to enlist with the US Army during the US occupation of Iraq), and Still Standing (about the challenges faced by Hurricane Katrina survivors). The films were moving, and even more moving were the current students & alumni of the program that went to the podium to tell the story of how they got involved with the EVC and what it meant to them to be able to learn filmmaking in a supportive environment and to express themselves in a profound way.
Adobe sponsored the screening last night, is a major financial supportor of the EVC, and soon we’ll be announcing a partnership with them and several other similar organizations worldwide in what is going to be the largest philanthropic program Adobe has ever undertaken. We’re a pretty philanthropic company to begin with, so you’ll be psyched to hear about it when it’s announced in the coming months. I get to be involved with this, and it’s by far the most meaningful thing that I’ve had the pleasure to do in a really long time.