Fifth Anniversary Of "The Tsunami" Illustrates Progress And Challenges Of Disaster Relief

New Documentary Film to Offer Insight to Relief Efforts by Presbyterian Disaster Assistance.

An event took place that quite literally shook the world. An undersea earthquake in the Indian Ocean unleashed a series of waves unlike any ever recorded. ?The Tsunami? ? as it has become known - affected 13 countries worldwide and released the energy equivalent of 23,000 Hiroshima-type atomic bombs, killing 150,000 people in a single day. Almost immediately, a global relief effort was unleashed, with Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, a disaster response system of the 2.4 million-member Presbyterian Church U.S.A., establishing itself as a long-term resource for victims of the tsunami.

Now, on the fifth anniversary of the disaster, Presbyterian Disaster Assistance and others are focusing on the event and its impact on the global community. News media from around the world covered the stories of the victims, survivors, relief organizations and efforts to help. Unfortunately, many of the news cameras have left the area, with survivors still struggling to piece together lives.

The new documentary film ?Kepulihan: Stories from the Tsunami,? tells the story of four people who make progress over four years while living in the dark shadow of one of the world?s worst natural disasters, but out of this chaos come incredible stories of hope, courage, and transformation. The stories told in the words of the survivors, offers a unique and moving insight into the struggles and progress made by these four survivors over 4 years time. The film is directed by David Barnhart, known for his experience in the documentary film genre, training his lens on disasters, both natural and man-made.

?Stories have the capacity to heal, connect people, and reveal our common humanity across cultural, religious, and socioeconomic barriers and boundaries,? said Barnhart. ?In this project we sought to lift up the human story of the Tsunami recovery in their own words and from their own experience.?

Rod W. Peters, who likes to raise awareness for humanitarian causes through the art of filmmaking, serves as executive producer of the film. Peters produced the Sudan-based documentary, ?Crossing River Gilo: The Return of the Sudan?s Seeds of Hope.?

While many disaster relief programs and organizations have left the region affected by the tsunami, Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) has remained, working with survivors. PDA has been recognized for its commitment to long-term disaster recovery and has taken an innovative step by integrating this type of participatory storytelling and filmmaking as an integral part of its recovery programs. Randy Ackley, PDA Coordinator says, ?PDA is anxious to help people in the U.S. and everywhere to understand how complex and difficult it is to truly recover from a disaster.?

?Kepulihan: Stories from the Tsunami? is sponsored by Presbyterian Disaster Assistance. The documentary is slated to participate in various film festivals during 2010 and will be shown on ABC Television in select markets during the fall of 2010.

For more information about the film, and to view a trailer, visit or contact David Barnhart at david.barnhart dot

For more information about Presbyterian Disaster Assistance visit or contact PDA at 1-888-728-7228 ext 5839 or email pda dot


Contact Details

Company Name: Kepulihan, Stories From The Tsunami
Issued By: Jonnice Slaughter
Phone: 404-348-8289
Website: Visit the website

by Jonnice Slaughter (few years ago!)

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