Umlilo was produced by high-school learners (grade 9 and 10) during Eh!woza’s Learner Doccies programme. The film looks at residents’ reflections on and experience of a devastating fire that broke out in B-section of Masiphumele on the 17th of December 2020. The fire destroyed over 1100 homes and displaced 4000 people. The effects of the fire are still being felt, with many residents recounting difficult experiences and highlighting that proper housing or sanitation is still not available.
During a set of blended workshops, the programme combined exposure to biomedical research with storytelling that raise awareness and stimulate dialogue about health and disease. Learners were recruited from the Masiphumelele branch of IkamvaYouth and participated in an intensive workshop that consists of science engagement (experiments and talks) and the production of short documentaries about experiences of health and disease and associated social concerns. Workshops were held at the Aerobiology Research Centre at the Desmond Tutu Health Foundation’s Masiphumelele site.
Learners conceptualised, shot and edited the films under the tuition and guidance of Eh!woza filmmakers Samuel Flans and Alfa Fipaza.