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Reel Stories: Screening in conjunction with the Arab Film Festival

Sat, 06/10/2017 - 5:30pm to Sun, 06/11/2017 - 8:45pm

Join AANM and the Palestinian Heritage Museum for a reception celebrating the work of 32 gifted, artistic, and empowering young women who were part of Reel Stories: Empowering Young Women through the Art of Filmmaking.

The evening will celebrate the joint endeavor between AANM and the Palestinian Heritage Museum, which brought together 17 young women from metro Detroit and 15 young women from East Jerusalem over the course of 20 weeks to empower, educate and inspire dialogue, culture and friendship through the art of filmmaking.  

The program will include the screening of two short films created entirely by the young women, followed by a youth panel discussion and a gallery stroll of SURA 2017 featuring Reel Stories: A Student Photography & Film Exhibition.

This program is in conjunction with AANM's Arab Film Festival 2017 @ Cinetopia Film Festival. For more info and full AFF schedule click HERE.


5:30 p.m. Film Screenings

‘Asfoura (Metro Detroit students): A coming of age story of an aspiring filmmaker who faces many outward conflicts against her identity.

Silence (East Jerusalem students): 13-year-old Tala discovers that her generation’s societal challenges are like that of her mother’s, and tackles these issues through a street movement. 

The screenings will be followed by a panel discussion with Reel Stories students:

Fatima Abu-Omarah is a 16 year old community organizer. She started the Palestinian Children Relief Fund student organization at Fordson High School and volunteers with many local initiatives. Fatima has interests in photography and film with political themes. She aspires to pursue advocacy through various medias.

Khadega Mohammed is a 17 year old Sudanese American spoken word artist and activist. Born in Sudan and raised in Saudi Arabia, Mohammed highlights many personal experiences through her spoken words, which shed light on issues in our society and broader world, such as racism, discrimination, and war. An advocate for social justice and peace, she uses her voice as a weapon for change. Mohammed currently resides in Canton, MI, and attends Plymouth-Canton Education Park. She's involved with various clubs and organizations such as the Muslim Student Association, African American Student Association and Student Council. She hopes to study international relations in college, and later pursue a human rights law degree. Khadega was a part of the Reel Stories Production team.

Ayah Mustafa is a 15 year old who attends Fordson High school. She has been fortunate enough to voice her views on society through her writing, whether it's poetry or a school essay. Her ambition is to spread knowledge about social issues and to enlighten individuals about their role in battling these issues through her writing. Ayah is the founder and president of a Creative Writing Club “The Quill” at Fordson High School. She has also participated in a district-wide poetry slam and is one of the writers at Reel Stories.

6:30 p.m. Gallery Stroll

Guided tours of SURA 2017 featuring Reel Stories: A Student Photography & Film Exhibition.  

Reel Stories: Empowering Young Women through the Art of Filmmaking is a Museums ConnectSM project. Museums Connect is an initiative of the US Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs that is administered by the American Alliance of Museums. 

Reel Stories is a joint program between the Arab American National Museum and Palestinian Heritage Museum. This program represents our joint commitment to empowering young people through the arts by improving the confidence, self-esteem, and accomplishments of girls and young women in our programs. 

The program offers up to 40 young women, 20 each from metro Detroit and East Jerusalem, between the ages of 14-17, a free and competitive opportunity to participate in a 20-week film making program. The program strives to bolster confidence, enlighten accomplishments, and enhance imagery of young women through learning the art of filmmaking, education, and creating international dialogues based on each other’s experiences. 

The 20-week filmmaking program includes three sections: 1) pre-production (focusing on writing and preparing a film; 2) production (focusing on directing and acting); and 3) post production (editing). 


Reel Stories introduces students to directing, acting, shooting, and editing a short movie 3 to 10 minutes in length. Students learn to write their scripts, how to use digital filmmaking equipment during workshop sessions and go into production. It introduces students to every step from the creative idea to the finalization of a short movie project. The program features workshops, screenings and discussion via classroom and closed social media. 

Course instructors are filmmaker Imad Hassan and editor Maha Bazzy.


Contact the AANM Education & Public Programming Department with questions: 
Isra El-beshir 

Petra Alsoofy