Each month, we feature a member of the Rose Foundation community. We hope that through these interviews, you get to know a little more about the dynamic people who make the Rose Foundation’s work possible. You are a part of the Rose Foundation community, and we want to tell your story too! If you want to be featured in an upcoming newsletter, let us know by replying to this email.
This month, we’re featuring Yenny Martin, our Film Selection Intern. Yenny joined us in June to help us find compelling films showcasing the power of grassroots activism and community resilience.
1. What brought you to the Rose Foundation?
Environmental conservation has become my main focus in the last handful of years. I studied documentary video production in college, and since graduating in 2014, I’ve been working at food recovery nonprofits. On my quest to merge my love of film and my love of the environment, I stumbled upon this Films Selection Internship with the Rose Foundation and was ecstatic. Rose’s work is so inspiring, and it’s a delight to be able to help curate a selection of films focused on climate resiliency and environmental justice to share with other climate advocates. It’s also very exciting to me that so many people will be (virtually) gathering to view both great creative work and important educational narratives. I’m also currently in a graduate program studying how to create environmental change through visual art and education, so the Rose Foundation is a wonderful example of community-oriented change-making to learn from.
2. Why do you think films are a powerful medium for storytelling and creating change?
Film is possibly the best medium for creating grassroots and world-wide change. I’ve always been intrigued by how a piece of writing or even a painting has the power to move people to tears in a way that’s unexplainable. I think we’re most inspired to act when we experience strong emotion, and film has this almost magical ability to make us feel and empathize. But I also think that in order to create change, education needs to play a role; and film (all kinds of film, but especially documentaries) is full of informative content.
3. What are some of your favorite environmental or climate-focused films?
I haven’t seen these films for a while, but I remember really liking Up the Yangze, about the construction of the Three Gorges Dam in Hubei, China, which displaced hundreds of families, and Gasland, Josh Fox’s documentary on how fracking impacts people who live near sites.
4. What are you up to when you’re not tracking down inspiring films to celebrate the power of grassroots activism with the Rose Foundation?
I spend an inordinate amount of time trying to entice my dog Sunny to cuddle with me. I also spend a lot of time making experimental vegan concoctions, and I try to get outside as much as possible.
5. Where is your favorite place in nature? Why is it special to you?
I love the shore-side public parks in the East Bay where I grew up, like the Albany Bulb and Point Pinole. Muir Beach is also special to me because I used to go there with my dad.
To check out the amazing suite of films celebrating the power of grassroots activism and community resilience that Yenny is putting together, get your tickets to our virtual 2021 Film Fest in September!