OAKLAND -- Films made by Oakland youth will be showcased Friday as part of Peralta Hacienda Historical Park's Project Share Oakland's Stories.
Project S.O.S. is a summer program where Oakland students are trained to use video, audio and editing equipment and software to learn digital storytelling.
In the 2012 program, Peralta Hacienda partnered with the Media Enterprise Alliance, a media program at KDOL-TV, to train seven students. These students were hired as interns for Media Enterprise Alliance, selected from a class they took with the media program during the 2011-12 school year.
The central theme of the films is food. Each student selected a traditional dish that represents their culture and filmed a family member cooking that dish. They also interviewed the family member about why the dish is important to their culture.
"For a lot of the kids, it opened up channels of communication with their families that really hadn't taken place before," said Jeff Key, executive director of Media Enterprise Alliance at KDOL-TV. "So in terms of connecting with their family and their cultural heritage, I thought it was very successful. They learned a lot about their family they hadn't known before."
This is the sixth year Peralta Hacienda has partnered with other local programs to work with students in filmmaking.
Previous themes are similar in that they recognize the diverse voices and cultures in Oakland. One theme, for example, was the immigration experience.
"Youth voices really need a channel to be heard and that is our operation," said Holly Alonso, executive director of Friends of Peralta Hacienda Historical Park.
"It's a way to really shout what they are feeling and wanting in their lives and when you work with media, you communicate those needs and desires and joys and aspirations to a much wider community."
Following the showings, there will be a Q&A session with the students about their films. There will also be showings of films from previous Peralta Hacienda programs.
The film showcase will be from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday at Peralta Hacienda Center for History and Community, 2488 Coolidge Ave., in Oakland.