About this project
This is a film about positivity.
Our vision is of a road trip not shaped by cities and locations, but rather by the people that inhabit them. We are three curious young, American college students setting out on a journey across India for two months.
At the end of June, we will be departing from everything we hold familiar and heading to India. We are traveling length of the country by train, car, rickshaw, and whatever other means necessary.
The roadmap we have created is charted with people that are making waves of change through India. We seek to collect portraits of these individuals and groups that are shaping a better world, especially the young people.
Through these interactions, we hope to discover what inspires these individuals, what pushes them forward, and how they envision the future of our world.
We are looking for different types of change makers.
-There are ones that create a positive impact through the power of their passion and drive. A boy in West Bengal started a school that has grown to 800 students. He is now only 17-years-old.
-Creating change through innovation and unconventional ideas. An organization in Bihar has provided power to over 50,000 rural villagers by using discarded rice husks.
-People whose effect on society can only be measured by the way they open our minds to dream. A man in northern India constructed a sculpture garden illegally and in secrecy for over 36 years before being discovered. He is now 85 years old and continues to work on the garden.
These are only a few of the individuals and organizations we will be documenting.
We have a hunch that the magical moments along the journey will be the ones we never set out for, and the moments we could never have planned. We bring with us a western conception of what makes a hero. However, the people that we meet along the journey may not be setting out to change the world, but through their attitudes.
There is no knowing what will happen in these two months, or how we will be changed by it.
We will be giving notebooks to the people we meet along our journey in India and ask them to document their thoughts over a month long period. After we receive their notebooks in the mail, we will be tying in the writing as a narrative in our film. Pinball Publishing, a printing company based in Portland, Oregon, has kindly donated 250 customized notebooks for the film. Find out more: www.scoutbooks.com
--THE ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK--
The film will be accompanied by an original soundtrack. Alex will be composing a series of original songs, mixed with field recordings compiled while in India.
A song from the soundtrack will be available for free download the day we leave for India exclusively for backers that give $25 or more.
Here are a few free downloads of past work from Alex (note: these songs will not be included in the soundtrack):
Bird Dog- Omaha
Bird Dog- Rajah Mantag
--FOLLOW US ALONG OUR JOURNEY THROUGH ATLAS OBSCURA---
The Atlas Obscura (www.atlasobscura.com) is a new web site that launched in June, 2009. The Atlas provides an avenue for travelers, explorers and inquisitive web browsers to share and contribute to the essential compilation of esoteric and obscure locales from across the globe. Their aim is to reacquaint both travelers and arm-chair travelers alike with just how wondrous and curious our world really is. We share enthusiasm with this goal, and look forward to working with them!
We are partnering with Atlas Obscura to host a travel blog while we are on the road. There will periodical postings updating our progress as we journey across India. You will have the chance to follow the progress of our film.
--USE OF THE FUNDS--
Three individuals traveling across India for two months incurs costs quickly: Insurance on cameras, mailing cost for the notebooks, global phone with minutes, medical aid kit, miscellaneous travel gear, external drives for footage, translator costs, etc.
Meet Babar Ali. At the age of 17, he is helping improve his world in a very real way. Every afternoon, Babar - a poor student himself - holds free classes for young underprivileged students of his village. He has done so for the last 8 years. His school provides not only provides education to hundreds of children, but also hope, a sense of belonging and a feeling of self-worth.
We are looking to visit Babar Ali along our journey.
Read more about Babar here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8299780.stm
Deenabandhu is a non-profit organization based in the U.S. and India, and has committed to help build a school for Babar's students. To date, the organization has raised about $4,300. They are hoping to raise a total of $15,000 by the end of this year. The total needed to build the school is about $50,000, which is the goal over the next two years.
Here is the deal: we need $6000 in order to make this journey possible. We set this amount to ensure that we reach our goal and receive our funds. However, we need closer to $8000 in order to allow for the flexibility we would prefer on our trip. ANY AMOUNT OF MONEY RAISED BEYOND $8000 WILL GO TOWARDS THE CONSTRUCTION OF BABAR ALI'S SCHOOL.
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