Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Engaged café revamps with a social-justice film studio




Engaged café revamps with a social-justice film studio

The new video production space is open to those examining social justice issues through film.
The new video production space is open to those examining social justice issues through film. Alessandro Marazzi Sassoon

Engaged café revamps with a social-justice film studio

The Justice Café and Library, which opened last year as a space for the Kingdom’s socially aware youth to study and hang out, has recently expanded to include a video production space accessible to those wishing to explore social justice issues through film.

Soon to be equipped with lights, cameras, microphones and a green screen, the media production space is meant to be “a tool to make change”, according to Céline Martin, a program manager with Destination Justice, the NGO that runs the café.

“The target is to train young people to do their own videos,” she says.

In addition to the café’s pre-existing events space, the new studio will be open to individuals as well as for organisations.

Already, the studio has produced a short animated film as a collaborative project with Rainbow Community Kampuchea (RoCK), an LGBT advocacy group. The video features animated characters speaking in Khmer about gender and sexual identity.

The animation advocates nondiscrimination and understanding through a series of anecdotes and is narrated by a female character named Leaphy.

“Love always wins!” she exclaims at one point as the image of a pride flag appears onscreen.

Sorng Sofok produced an animation on identity.
Sorng Sofok produced an animation on identity. Alessandro Marazzi Sassoon

“The idea is to continue to do stuff like this,” says Martin. “But our target is to train young people to do their own videos so they can make the change they want.”

Sorng Sofok, who produced the video for RoCK, says he will be assisting with an upcoming training session.

Over the past year, the Justice Café has held talks and screenings on subjects ranging from human trafficking to criminal justice. Speakers have included Anta Guissé, a defence lawyer for Khieu Samphan, and Road Safety Institute director Ear Chariya, who spoke on the occasion of the release of a short film about traffic accidents.

Martin hopes the new space is a place for staging future films. “But the idea is not for us to make the change, but to encourage,” she says.

The Justice Café and Library, #D5 Street 53BT, is open on Monday through Friday. Tel: 086 588 512.

MOST VIEWED

  • Kingdom accepts Chinese vaccine, PM first to get jab

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said China would offer Cambodia an immediate donation of one million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine produced by the Sinopharm company. In an audio message addressing the public on the night of January 15, he said Cambodia has accepted the offer and

  • Reeling in Cambodia’s real estate sector

    A new norm sets the scene but risks continue to play out in the background A cold wind sweeps through the streets of Boeung Trabek on an early January morning as buyers and traders engage in commerce under bright blue skies. From a distance, the

  • Hun Sen: Lakes filled in for national developments

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has announced continued operations to fill some lakes in Phnom Penh to create land for developments, though he is against the unrelated practice of damming rivers or blocking waterways. Speaking at the inauguration of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport

  • Koh Preus upgrades 70% complete

    Initial construction of a nearly $30 million tourism infrastructure project on Preah Sihanouk province’s Koh Preus Island is “about 70 per cent complete”, according to an official with the developer. Heng Thou, construction site manager of Angela Real Estate Co Ltd (ARE), told The Post that

  • Local media loses a giant, and The Post a great friend

    Cheang Sokha, a gifted and streetwise reporter who rose to the highest ranks of Cambodian media and was beloved for his sharp intelligence, world-class humour and endless generosity, died on Friday in his hometown of Phnom Penh. He was 42. His wife, Sok Sophorn, said he

  • Cambodia, India agree to start direct flights, tourism exchanges

    Cambodia and India have agreed to start direct flight connections and promote closer tourism exchanges and cooperation in all areas after the Covid-19 saga comes to a close. The agreement was reached during a meeting between Cambodian Minister of Tourism Thong Khon and newly-minted Indian