Archive for the ‘Notes from the Director’ Category

Obama Administration Fails Landmine Survivors at 13MSP

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

Today the United States of America failed to stand with landmine survivors and against the destruction of landmines.

Below is the statement from the United States Campaign to Ban Landmines:

December 5, 2013

The Obama administration is failing in its humanitarian duty and failing to keep its promises by its inability to conclude its review of US landmine policy more than four years after it began.

One year ago, at the 12MSP, the U.S. delegation assured States Parties that it would conclude the long-delayed review “soon.” At a later public briefing, the head of the delegation clarified that “soon” would be consistent with a reasonable understanding of the word, and that he believed—at the outside—that an announcement of the decision of the review would take place no later than this Meeting of States Parties.

Yet at the meeting today, the head of the U.S. delegation provides us with no other information than that the policy review is “pressing forward.”

The Bush administration concluded its review in three years. Yet four plus years later, we are still waiting on the Obama administration to complete its active and ongoing review. Essentially, this administration has spent another year ignoring this issue, choosing instead to delay a decision on joining a treaty that is saving so many lives every day. There is no excuse for such inaction and the humanitarian costs it entails.

The U.S. continues to opt to stand outside the Mine Ban Treaty, alongside notable outsiders, instead of inside it with all of its NATO and European Union allies. The administration’s apparent unwillingness to commit to no further use of these weapons and to destruction of its existing stockpile of more than 10 million landmines is unacceptable—and additionally provide cover for other countries to defer accession and justify future use. There is simply no scenario in 2013 in which it is realistic that landmines are the only acceptable or even logical military alternative.

The further postponement of the conclusion of this review demonstrates that this administration is just not taking this process seriously—not treating this process as a priority. Yet during these same four years, more than 16,000 men, women, and children have been killed or maimed by a landmine—many by U.S. munitions, and ten more casualties continue to occur every day. This issue is important and needs to be a priority.

 

Below is the statement from the US delegation:

Statement by Steven Costner
United States Delegation to Thirteenth Meeting of States Parties to the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their destruction

December 5, 2013

Thank you , Mr. President,
The United States is pleased to attend the Thirteenth Meeting of States Parties to the Ottawa Convention. We congratulate those states that reported completing anti-personnel mine clearance this year.
The United States shares the concern of Parties to the Ottawa Convention and continues to demonstrate our commitment to addressing the humanitarian consequences caused by landmines, both anti-personnel and anti-vehicle. We understand many supporters of the Ottawa Convention both here at this meeting and around the world are interested in the progress of the U.S. landmine policy review, and we assure you that we are pressing forward to conclusion.
As always, the United States applauds the significant accomplishments to date by Parties to the Ottawa Convention in addressing the humanitarian impact of anti-personnel landmines, and we remain committed to a continuing partnership with other States and non-governmental organizations in this effort.
Thank you, Mr. President.

Now Available on Hulu: “The Eyes of Thailand”

Friday, November 8th, 2013

We are thrilled to announce that the 10-time award-winning documentary, “The Eyes of Thailand“, is now available on Hulu, as well as iTunes, Amazon and DVD.

Narrated by Ashley Judd, “The Eyes of Thailand” tells the true and inspirational story of Soraida Salwala’s quest to help two elephant landmine survivors–Motala and Baby Mosha–walk on their own four legs. Treating their wounds was only part of the journey; building elephant-sized prostheses was another.

Get some E-LOVE-PHANT. Download, stream or purchase “The Eyes of Thailand” today!

SPECIAL OFFER: Save 50% on your “Eyes of Thailand” Screening when you book by July 31, 2013.

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

You’ve probably heard of the “Summer of Love”. Well, we want 2013 to be known as the “Summer of ELE-Love”!

That’s why we’ve negotiated to offer THE EYES OF THAILAND Special Screenings at a 50% Discount if you book by July 31st.

The Eyes of Thailand DVDWe’re calling it THE EYES OF THAILAND “Summer of ELE-Love“ Package, and if you book your screening by July 31st, you’ll lock in the Special Screening price of US $250.
Summer of ELE-Love” Screening PACKAGE: $250.00
A 50% Discount!!!
Your screening fee includes:

(1) THE EYES OF THAILAND Screener DVD

(1) Screening License for one Private Screening
(1) Online PR Kit, including: poster art, logo, trailer, press kit.
Facebook and/or Twitter posts from the filmmakers to help promote your screening.
You save 50%.
Your community gets inspired.
The filmmakers will donate 10% of the Screening Fee to FAE’s Elephant Hospital. 
It’s a Win-Win-Win scenario!
THE EYES OF THAILAND screening is perfect for schools, colleges, churches, synagogues, temples, yoga studios, businesses, organizations and community fundraisers.
And if you charge $10 per ticket, you start making a profit after only 25 people!
Book by July 31st.
Screen the film anytime before December 31st.
Ask about the Special Option to add a Post-Screening Skype or Facetime call with Director/Producer Windy Borman.
Offer expires July 31st, so don’t wait! 
Book your screening of THE EYES OF THAILAND by July 31st, to save 50% on the screening fee and start spreading the “ELE-Love” to your community.
We look forward to bringing the film elephants everywhere give “2 Trunks Up!” to a group, organization or school near you! Email us today!
Sincerely,
Windy, Tim and “The Eyes of Thailand” Team

Elephant survivors featured at Bangkok Symposium for Landmine Cooperation and Assistance

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

"The Eyes of Thailand" screened in Bangkok for an international symposium on landmine victim assistance.

Thailand hosted a Special Screening of “The Eyes of Thailand” at an international symposium to enhance assistance and cooperation among mine-affected countries.

The three-day Bangkok Symposium on Cooperation and Assistance: Building Synergy towards Effective Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention Implementation began on June 23 with a field visit to the Sirindhorn National Medical Rehabilitation Centre, which provides care for persons with disabilities, including landmine survivors.

At the welcoming reception that evening, more than 100 experts and diplomats representing over 35 countries and 10 international and non-governmental organizations attended a Special Screening of “The Eyes of Thailand”, featuring Soraida Salwala, founder of the world’s first Elephant Hospital (FAE), which has treated 15 elephant landmine victims since opening in Thailand in 1993.

“It was a big honour to FAE and me that there was the request to have ‘The Eyes of Thailand’ screened at the welcoming reception,” writes Soraida. “In the welcoming speech by the Deputy Director General of the Department of International Organizations, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand, kindly talked about how ‘The Eyes of Thailand’ was made and the inspiration it has caused to many that have seen it. I was so overwhelmed, tears filled my eyes.”

Narrated by Ashley Judd, the 10-time award-winning documentary shows Salwala’s quest to help two elephant landmine survivors walk again on their own four legs. Treating their wounds was only part of the journey; building the world’s first elephant prostheses was another.

His Royal Highness Prince Mired Raad Al Hussein of Jordan, Special Envoy of the Convention, gave a keynote address and highlighted the “need to strengthen national ownership and seek efficient and creative ways to implement mine clearance and assist landmine survivors.” He congratulated Soraida’s achievement and innovation to heal and protect Thailand’s elephant casualties.

Soraida Salwala, Founder of FAE's Elephant Hospital, and His Royal Highness Prince Mired Raad Al Hussein of Jordan, Special Envoy of the Convention.

“His Royal Highness kindly enquired how Motala and Mosha were doing, their prosthetic legs and other victims of landmines,” she writes. “I am so honoured and could not help but feel that the world needs more people who care deeply about the victims of landmines, be them human or animals—and in this case the elephants.”

The needs and rights of landmine survivors, including the plight of the elephant landmine survivors, featured prominently in the Symposium, sponsored by Australia and Thailand and supported by the Convention’s Implementation Unit (ISU).

“I could never thank you enough for the hard work you did and the work and support of so many people who have made ‘THE EYES OF THAILAND’ reach out to the world,” Soraida said.

To order a DVD or learn how you can host a Special Screening of “The Eyes of Thailand”, visit http://eyesofthailand.com

Host a Private Screening of “The Eyes of Thailand”

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

“An inspiring and unique documentary that will open up hearts and minds.”
-The Humane Society of the United States

The Eyes of Thailand DVDThe 10-time award-winning documentary, THE EYES OF THAILAND, narrated by Ashley Judd, about Soraida Salwala’s quest to help two elephant landmine survivors walk again on their own four legs, is now available for Private Screenings for your organization or group.

As a young girl, Soraida saw an injured elephant lying on the side of the road because it had been hit by a truck. In 1993, Soraida opened the World’s First Asian Elephant Hospital to treat elephants who were ill or injured from work, abuse or neglect. Six years later, they faced their most difficult challenge: how to save an adult elephant who stepped on a landmine.

A true story of sacrifice and perseverance, THE EYES OF THAILAND shows how far one woman will go to save an endangered species from threats above and below the surface. Soraida’s story is the perfect example of what happens when you Dream BIG. When you combine compassion, human ingenuity and determination, you can make the “impossible” possible.

The film illustrates Soraida Salwala’s “dedication, her insistence that elephants not be forgotten.”
-PopMatters

  • Create an exciting and powerful event.
  • Host your own THE EYES OF THAILAND private screening for your group.
  • Include a Special Guest: the star/subject Soraida Salwala and/or the filmmakers!
  • Be inspired. Dream BIG.

“World’s largest landmine survivors walk again with human help and ingenuity… The video… [is] an emotional tripwire.”
-TakePart.com

Please email Director/Producer Windy Borman or Producer Tim VandeSteeg for additional information or to book your Private Screening.

“I hope [the film] will raise awareness to protect Asian Elephants–and all beings–from the terror of land mines.”
-Ashley Judd

We look forward to helping you bring the powerful and inspirational THE EYES OF THAILAND to a group, organization or school near you!

‘The Eyes of Thailand” Now Available on DVD

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

The Eyes of Thailand DVDD.V.A. Productions, in Association with Indiewood Pictures, is proud to announce the nationwide DVD release of “The Eyes of Thailand”. FilmWorks Entertainment distributes the film and DVD orders can be placed at http://eyesofthailand.com.

“The Eyes of Thailand” is directed/produced by Windy Borman and produced by Tim VandeSteeg. The 10-time award-winning documentary, narrated by Ashley Judd, tells the heartwarming and heroic true story of Soraida Salwala, a passionate woman who dedicated 10 years of her life to help two Asian elephants walk again after losing their legs from stepping on landmines.

“The Eyes of Thailand” was awarded the “ACE Documentary Film Grant” from The Humane Society of the United States, the “Best Documentary” Jury Award from the Big Bear Lake International Film Festival, and “Best Documentary” Audience Award from Flickers: Rhode Island International Film Festival. Salwala received the “Best Heroine in a Wildlife Film” Award at the International Wildlife Film Festival and was nominated for the “People and Nature” Panda Award at the Wildscreen Festival. The film has also garnered Humanitarian, Green, Animal Advocacy and Animation awards since its film festival premiere in April 2012.

The elephant stars of the film have been capturing the hearts of people worldwide and were featured in National Geographic, Yahoo, Takepart.com, Huffington Post and IndieWire.

You can order your DVD today by clicking here.

“The Eyes of Thailand” sets sights for Northwest Premiere at the Port Townsend Film Festival This Weekend

Monday, September 17th, 2012

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Contact Name:  Windy Borman

Email: windy@dvaproductions.com

 

‘THE EYES OF THAILAND’ SETS SIGHTS FOR NORTHWEST PREMIERE AT THE PORT TOWNSEND FILM FESTIVAL

Ashley Judd narrates the eight-time award-winning film that has its roots in the Pacific Northwest.

SEATTLE, WA (September 17, 2012) – D.V.A. Productions, in Association with Indiewood Pictures, is proud to announce the Northwest Premiere of The Eyes of Thailand at the Port Townsend Film Festival (PTFF). The Film will screen Saturday, September 22, 2012 at 6:15pm at the Rose Theatre (Port Townsend, WA) and Sunday, September 23 at 12:30pm at the Uptown Theatre (Port Townsend, WA). Tickets are available at <http://www.ptfilmfest.com/>. Special guests include Director/Producer Windy Borman.

“The Eyes of Thailand” is directed/produced by Windy Borman and produced by Tim VandeSteeg. The 8-time award-winning documentary, narrated by Ashley Judd, tells the heartwarming and heroic true story of Soraida Salwala, a passionate woman who dedicated 10 years of her life to help two Asian elephants walk again after losing their legs from stepping on landmines.

Judd writes, “The Eyes of Thailand is a story of sacrifice and perseverance that shows how far one woman will go to save an endangered species from threats above and below the surface. I hope it will raise awareness to protect Asian Elephants—and all beings—from the terror of landmines.”

Borman began production on “The Eyes of Thailand” in November 2007, while traveling in Thailand with a Port Townsend theatre company, but when Borman met Salwala and the two elephant landmine survivors, the direction of the film changed.

“When I met Soraida, Mosha and Motala, I knew I discovered an untold story that I needed to share with the world. Witnessing Mosha and Motala take their first steps on their new prostheses was one of the most amazing moments of my life. I cannot wait to share it with the world–and especially the company members from Port Townsend,” said Borman.

“The Eyes of Thailand” was awarded the “ACE Documentary Film Grant” from The Humane Society of the United States and the “Best Documentary” Jury Award from the Big Bear Lake International Film Festival. Salwala received the “Best Heroine in a Wildlife Film” Award at the International Wildlife Film Festival. The film has also garnered Humanitarian, Green, Animal Advocacy and Animation awards since its World Premiere in April 2012.

The elephant stars of the film have been capturing the hearts of people worldwide and were featured in National Geographic, Yahoo, Takepart.com, Huffington Post and IndieWire.

The filmmakers have created a successful and loyal following through the film’s social media sites, including Facebook <www.facebook.com/eyesofthailand> and Twitter <www.twitter.com/eyesofthailand>, and the film’s website <www.eyesofthailand.com>.

For further inquiries, please contact: Windy Borman windy@dvaproductions.com

Pre-Order your Official “Eyes of Thailand” Gear

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

To help you show off your “Eyes of Thailand” spirit at our upcoming film festivals, we’ve launched a Facebook Store so you can pre-order your official “Eyes of Thailand” T-shirts and posters. The gear is in limited supply, so pre-order yours TODAY!

“Dream Big” T-Shirts: We love to see Democracy in action! Our Facebook Fans voted in August on their favorite T-shirt designs and here’s the winning look. The design features Motala and Baby Mosha on the front with our “Dream Big” slogan, and the title of the film on the back. Men’s, women’s and kid’s sizes available.

 

(c) Eyes of Thailand, LLC

 

Official Film Posters: Now you can bring home a bit of elephant history with an official poster for “The Eyes of Thailand”. Posters are unsigned and measure 24″ x 36″, exactly the same size we use at our film festival screenings!

 

(c) Eyes of Thailand, LLC. All rights reserved.

SPECIAL NOTES:

  • If you selected a T-shirt or poster as part of a Donation Perk, you do NOT have to pre-order your gear. We already have you factored into the headcount.
  • Posters and T-shirts will be mailed later this month.
  • If you’re coming to a festival in September, we’ll have T-shirts on hand for cash purchase.
  • Once we decide on a water bottle company, we’ll reveal the water bottle design and add them to the Facebook Store, too.

“The Eyes of Thailand” wins Green Planet Award

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

The Eyes of Thailand” continues its award streak by receiving the Green Planet Award from FLICKERS: Rhode Island International Film Festival. The Green Planet Award is given to the film whose missions are “celebrating the vision of man’s shared humanity and achieving sustainability on our planet.”

“The Eyes of Thailand” tells the true and inspirational story of Soraida Salwala’s quest to help two elephant landmine survivors walk again. Treating their wounds was only part of the journey: building elephant-sized prostheses was another. The now 7-time award-winning film is directed/produced by Windy Borman, produced by Tim VandeSteeg and narrated by Ashley Judd.

The Green Planet Award was extra special for “The Eyes of Thailand” because it was announced on World Elephant Day.

To learn more about the film’s social and environmental goals, visit “The Eyes of Thailand” website.

East Coast Premiere of “The Eyes of Thailand”

Saturday, July 28th, 2012

Soriada Salwala’s love for elephant began early. When she was 8-years old, she saw an injured elephant lying helplessly on the side of the road. As her family drove past, they hear a gunshot. Her father explained, “Uncle Elephant is in heaven now”. “But if he was dying,” asked young Soraida, “why couldn’t he go to the hospital?” Flash forward several years and Soraida opened the World’s First Elephant Hospital to treat ill and injured elephants.

To date Soraida and her staff have treated over 3,500 Asian elephants for everything from eye infections, knife wounds, gunshot wounds and broken bones. However, their biggest challenge came in 1999 when an elephant landmine survivor, named Motala, arrived at FAE’s Elephant Hospital. Seven years later, a 7-month old calf named Mosha, arrived after she stepped on a landmine.

Soraida’s amazing 10-year journey to help these two elephant landmine survivors walk again on prostheses is chronicled in the award-winning, inspirational documentary, The Eyes of Thailand, narrated by Ashley Judd. The film is directed/produced by Windy Borman and produced by Tim VandeSteeg.

“The Eyes of Thailand” will have its East Coast Premiere at Flickers: Rhode Island International Film Festival on August 12, 2012 at 12:00pm. Coincidentally, August 12th is the inaugural World Elephant Day.

Purchase tickets via: http://tinyurl.com/eotRIIFF

Invite your FaceBook friends to the event: http://www.facebook.com/events/379676615421360/

You can also find information and keep track of the film’s progress via the website, FaceBook and Twitter.