WISPPA Presents Sands of Silence: Waves of Courage

The award winning documentary SANDS OF SILENCE: Waves of Courage will be presented by WISPPA and the South Pasadena Library
on Wednesday, January 10th, 2018 at 7:30 at the South Pasadena Library Community Room.  


This special screening is in honor of Human Trafficking Prevention Month and National Human Trafficking Awareness Day (January 11).  After the showing of the film, there will be a question and answer period with Director Chelo Alvarez-Stehle and Survivor Virginia Isaias.  Additional sponsors are The League of Women Voters – Pasadena, The Rotary Club of South Pasadena, LA County Supervisor Kathryn Barger, Carrie Adrian-Cuban and Latin American Fine Art,  NWPC of Greater Pasadena, Holy Family Church South Pasadena, Woman’s Club of South Pasadena, Woman’s Civic League of Pasadena, and the Kiwanis Club of South Pasadena.  A voluntary donation of $5 is requested. Proceeds will go to fund the film’s impact campaign and the Human Trafficking Survivors Foundation.
This film is a 15-year quest to expose the underworld of sexual exploitation and trafficking from Asia to the Americas  and leads world-reporter and producer/director/writer of the film to the windswept beach where her childhood ended and family secrets began.  “Through the searing stories Chelo Alvarez-Stehle tells in her film, she demonstrates that sexual abuse and sexual trafficking are but points on a continuum. In so doing, she has made an important contribution to the national conversation about sexual assault and rape culture. This film is part of the new movement of independent documentary films that reveal important truths about the terrible secrets we keep as a society and the toll they take on all of us.” — Jack Lerner, UC Irvine law professor, Director of the UCI Intellectual Property, Arts, and Technology Clinic, member of the Board of Directors of the International Documentary Association.
Chelo Alvarez-Stehle says “The making of this film pushed me into a new journey of introspection. Witnessing our main subject Virginia find the courage to speak out about her trafficking experience and then confront the abuse within her family, inspired me to come face to face with the silence about abuse in my family. This gradually pushed me to reveal my own hidden ghosts in the film.”
“Thus my story creates a link between the horrors of commercial sexual exploitation, which affect many of those who live marginal lives, and the diffused but pervasive sexual abuse that our society tacitly condones. One important common theme is that the silence must be broken first within families. The support and understanding gained when families come together allows women to speak out publicly. By interweaving my story and my family’s with that of Virginia and her family, while stressing the vast differences, this film brings out that essential step. In spite of the different backgrounds, the same familial dynamic occurred when Virginia or I tried to speak up about abuse. This resonates with audiences in an intimate way, inspiring them to find the courage to break their own silence on sexual exploitation and moving them to take action at a societal level.”