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Students Continue Advocacy Work With December Film Festival Screening

Nov. 18, 2005 -- The fourth annual Human Rights Film Festival at Mount Saint Mary’s University, Los Angeles, screens the feature film "Innocent Voices" at 7 p.m. Dec. 7 in the Chalon Campus Little Theater, 12001 Chalon Road in Brentwood. The event is free and open to the public.

"Innocent Voices" is based on a true story about child soldiers in El Salvador. The story depicts the childhood of screenwriter Oscar Torres, who will attend the screening for a question-and-answer session with the audience.

The film festival is one opportunity for students in the College's Documentary Film and Social Justice program to learn about advocacy and human rights abuses around the world. Lecturer Pam Bruns, who teaches the class Advocacy and Human Rights, said the festival's theme is "children in conflict." Following film screenings, students are given opportunities to sign petitions and contact U.S. elected officials to help stop human rights abuses.

"What distinguishes the Mount Saint Mary’s University film festival from others is that we always have an immediate opportunity for students to do advocacy," said Bruns. "We don't want them to lose the passion they feel right after they watch a film."

This is the third screening in the festival since September. Students in the documentary film program previously screened “Dying to Tell the Story” about journalists covering stories in war-torn countries, and “Invisible Children” about the thousands of children in Uganda who are kidnapped by rebel soldiers, and taught to carry weapons and kill.

At each screening, students are actively involved in advocacy work to help bring more attention to human rights abuses.

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