A PLACE TO BREATHE explores the universality of trauma and resilience through the eyes of immigrant and refugee healthcare practitioners and patients. This feature-length documentary intertwines the personal journeys of those who are transcending their own obstacles by healing others. Combining cinema vérité and animation, the film highlights the creative strategies by which immigrant communities in the U.S. survive and thrive.
The film weaves together the arcs of Rodrigue (DR Congo), Socheat (Cambodia), Norma (Guatemala), and the young couple Edgar and Yania (Mexico and Uruguay) as they pursue their dreams of supporting their communities’ healing. Common ground and chance connections join these unique stories as the film humanizes those who have migrated here, sharing their wisdom and perspectives that enrich and strengthen our communities.
Director/Producer: Michelle Grace Steinberg
Producer: Robyn Bykofsky
Cinematographer and Editor: Michelle Grace Steinberg
Co-Editor: Shirley Gutierrez
Animators: Héloïse Dorsan Rachet and Anna Benner
Composer: E.E. Bradman
Awards and Screenings
A PLACE TO BREATHE premiered at San Francisco DocFest in September 2020 and did a two-week run at the Roxie Theater SF (virtually) in October 2020. The film won the Interfaith Documentary Award at the 2020 St. Louis International Film Festival and the Social Justice Award at the Queen City Film Festival. It also screened at Alexander Valley Film Festival and American Public Health Association Film Festival, as well as two weeks of virtual streaming via the Wexner Center for the Arts in January 2021.
The World Health Organization (WHO) screened A PLACE TO BREATHE in Turkey in April 2021 for their Leave No One Behind Film Days event on refugee and migrant health. Check out the WHO panel discussion and contact the film producers to learn how you can utilize the film to spark discussions in your community!
Studio Session: Michelle Grace Steinberg on A Place to Breathe
Bitch Talk Podcast: A Place to Breathe with Michelle Grace Steinberg and Robyn Bykofsky
Interview: "A Place to Breathe, New Documentary on Immigration", KPFA (Audio)
Educational Media Reviews Online
Eat Drink Films Review | A Place to Breathe: Prescribing Community
The Oaklandside Online Review | Immigrants navigate the healthcare system in “A Place to Breathe”
A Place to Breathe Official Facebook Page
A Place to Breathe on GOOD DOCS
To find out more about the film and to purchase a special public screening licence please contact directly Nelli Stavropoulou here.
Refugee Week Screenings
'A Place to Breathe' Screening, Sunday 19th June at 11AM at Pionierfläche OTTO at Haus der Statistik, Berlin. Organised by Refugee Week Berlin (Eventbrite registration link)
We believe in the power of film to open up opportunities for dialogue and community reflection. We’ve designed post-screening discussion guides for all films, to be used as a starting point for conversations inspired by our Moving Worlds programme
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