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2011.10.03 > For Immediate Release
contact: Tim Kaldahl - University Relations
phone: 402.554.3502 - email: tkaldahl@unomaha.edu

UNO & Film Stream Present New Film

Omaha - “The Quilted Conscience” is a 60-minute film showing the beautiful and important story of a group of sixteen Sudanese-American girls--refugees from the genocide in their troubled homeland--who are thrust into a new life in the town of Grand Island, Nebraska. The film will be given a special preview screening at Film Streams, 1340 Mike Fahey Street, on Thursday, Oct. 6. The 7 p.m. screening--presented in collaboration with UNO’s Grace Abbott School of Social Work and the University of Nebraska Foundation--at Film Streams is sold out.The screening is free thanks to the generous support of Beardmore Chevrolet Subaru.

Because of the local and state interest in the film, the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) will host a second free screening on Friday, Oct. 7, at 6:30 p.m. in the College of Public Affairs and Community Service (CPACS) Collaborating Commons, Room 132. The campus community and public are all encouraged to attend. Those wishing to attend should RSVP to Laura Hamrick at lbisson@unomaha.edu or call (402) 554-3057.

“We’re happy to host this event and hope everyone who is interested in the film can view it with us,” said Theresa Barron-McKeagney, director of the Grace Abbott School of Social Work. “This is unique and rare opportunity to see this documentary.”

“The Quilted Conscience” is also the story of a quilters’ guild of local white women in Grand Island, some of whom have had little previous contact with ethnic or racial minorities, and of famed African-American quilt-maker Peggie Hartwell who travels a thousand miles to help “stitch” the two groups together by means of a “culture-blend” fabric art project: the making of a beautiful wall-size mural, composed of dozens of dramatic story panels created by the Sudanese girls with the help of the local women. John Sorensen, who directed the film, accompanied by some of the Sudanese students, will attend both the Filmstreams and UNO screenings. They will give after-film talks both nights. The Film Streams event will include a display of the finished mural fabric-artwork.

This documentary is a celebration of African culture in the middle of archetypal white America. Along the way, it shares the inspiring message of hometown hero Grace Abbott, who was born and raised in the Sudanese students’ new community of Grand Island. Grace Abbott was an extraordinary leader in the struggles for America’s children and immigrants who, as Director of the Immigrants’ Protective League (1908-1921) and Chief of the U.S. Children’s Bureau (1921-1934), is credited with saving thousands of children’s and immigrants’ lives and improving those of millions more, and is specially remembered for her famous quote, “Justice for all children is the high ideal in a democracy” -- which serves as the film’s credo.

The College of Public Affairs and Community Service is located on UNO’s Dodge Street campus just southeast of the Belltower. For more information, please call (402) 554-3502.

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The University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is Nebraska’s metropolitan university. The core values of the institution place students at the center of all that the university does; call for the campus to strive for academic excellence; and promote community engagement that transforms and improves urban, regional, national and global life. UNO, inaugurated in 1968, emerged from the Municipal University of Omaha, established in 1931, which grew out of the University of Omaha founded in 1908.

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