Season nine of the award-winning documentary series AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchange ends with the empowering story of one man who stood up to change his culture, saving generations of children. John Rowe’s visually stunning Omo Child: The River and the Bush demonstrates how one determined individual can transform an entire society. The season finale premieres on WORLD Channel at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on Monday, February 16. AfroPoP is hosted by acclaimed actress Nikki Beharie (Sleepy Hollow, Shame, 42), produced by Harlem-based National Black Programming Consortium (NBPC) and co-presented by series distributor American Public Television (APT).
This multiple award-winning film shot over five years captures a young man’s crusade to end an ancient cultural practice. In the Omo Valley of Ethiopia, the Kara tribe maintained an unimaginable tradition: killing infants thought to be cursed. Risking his own life, Lale Labuko, who had left the area to live in the wider society, creates a movement to change the practice that threatens the lives of healthy babies and the eventual extinction of his tribe.
“How many of us can stand firm and alone against the leaders of our community to right a wrong in the face of ostracism and threat of physical harm? Lale Labuko’s quest to end this harmful practice and move his community towards a more humane future is both inspirational and empowering, and a call for us all to stand firm against injustice,” said NBPC Director of Programs and Acquisitions and AfroPoP Co-Executive Producer Kay Shaw. “Omo Child touched me in ways few films have and left me hopeful for our future.”
Other films in the series this season include:
- George Potter and Andy Adkins’ An American Ascent, which shows the first African-American team to attempt to summit North America’s highest peak, Denali.
- Eric Kabera’s moving Intore, which reveals the work of a new generation of artists in Rwanda to help bridge the divide caused by the country’s horrific 100-day genocide.
- Tyler Johnston and Miquel Galofré’s beautiful My Father’s Land, which follows an undocumented worker in the Bahamas who risks it all to return to his native Haiti to see his ailing, aged father.
- Eva Weber’s important documentary Black Out, which shines the spotlight on schoolchildren in Guinea who trek for miles each day during exam season to find places with light so they can study.
- Olivia Peace’s narrative short film Pangaea, a moving story of a young girl who was trapped on a rooftop after Hurricane Katrina, which airs with Black Out.
This season’s episodes of AfroPoP can be seen online at www.worldchannel.org. APT will release the series to the nation’s public television stations later this month. Check local listings or www.APTonline.org.
AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchange is produced by Angela Tucker and directed by Duana Butler with the generous support of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and National Endowment for the Arts.
To find out more about AfroPoP, visit www.blackpublicmedia.org.
The National Black Programming Consortium (NBPC) is committed to enriching our democracy by educating, enlightening, empowering and engaging the American public.