About

New York City youth from the Educational Video Center live, learn, and make documentaries and a website together with rural youth in Appalachia’s Clearfork Valley community of East Tennessee. Turning their cameras on systemic issues including the opioid epidemic and the right to broadband access, the teenagers learn how interconnected their urban and rural communities really are. Rooted in EVC's NYC-Appalachia Student Video Exchange from the 1980's, the We Are All Connected project brings youth from these communities together to help bridge our rural-urban divides.   

The Project

Bridging the Urban and Rural Divide through Youth Empowered Media

We Are All Connected
 

Peyton is from Stinking Creek, Tennessee and signed up for the We Are All Connected project because she was interested in how the whole film making process works. She is looking to reduce, and eventually end the drug epidemic within her community. Peyton loves the editing process, but also enjoys running the cameras and conducting interviews. She wants to be a doctor and believes that there are nationwide problems, in rural communities, as well as urban. That being said, Peyton believes it is critical and important that we, rural and urban, come and work together to solve them.is width though. 

Andrew Buttram is from Habersham, Tennessee and signed up for the We Are All Connected project because he was interested in working with cameras and interviewing people. Andrew goes to school in the city of Jellico, TN, which is suffering from a high rate of drug abuse. He is motivated to help clean up Jellico and restore it to its former glory. He enjoys being a cameraman but feels he is more of a reporter. He believes it’s so important to connect the urban and rural communities together because if we worked together it would be one step closer to resolving the problems within them.

Kendri Feliz

Kendri is from the Bronx, New York and applied for the We Are All Connected program because he wanted to improve his film making skills, meet new people, and listen to their opinions on social justice related topics. His goal is to inspire the new generation of teens to try something new and help change communities in need of assistance. Kendri has had various roles as a film maker - as a producer, soundman, cameraman, interviewer, as well as being featured as a subject in the EVC documentary, Family Portrait of Single Mothers, which he also helped produce.  Being a cameraman is what Kendri enjoys most, since he has dealt with cameras since he was 5. He feels that making urban and rural connections is important because “We only know what goes on in our own community, but not in others that might need similar assistance with issues like crime, drugs and the irresponsibility of government.”

James is from Campbell County, Tennessee and since joining the We Are All Connected program, his favorite part about film making has been the photography. He enjoys capturing images that create powerful memories. James believes the connections between urban and rural gives a wider understanding of how the two are both different and similar. Through this project he hopes to help improve the drug problem in Campbell County. James is also interested in the history of extinct species and intends on becoming a paleontologist.  

Emily is from Duff, Tennessee and enjoys being with her family and reading books. She signed up for the We Are All Connected project for the experience of meeting new people and learning something new. Out of the different roles in the film making process she enjoys working with the camera the most. Emily wants to see a change in her community with drug issues.and thinks that making the connections between urban and rural areas shows the big differences and similarities between the two.

Gabriel Martinez

Gabriel is from the Bronx, New York and chose to be a part of the We Are All Connected Project because he is a strong advocate for social justice and humanitarian causes. Through this project he wants to educate himself and others on ongoing issues in rural and urban communities. Moreover, he wants to motivate people to take action on these issues. Gabriel’s strongest roles in the project have been as an interviewer and a sound person. He believes it’s imperative that these sort of connections and interactions between urban and rural are made because our problems across areas can be extremely similar and resolved with better communication. Both communities are vital for each other and their interactions deeply affect not just their ecosystem but also daily life. Gabriel also plans on going to college and majoring in journalism. 

Griselys Pena

Griselys was born and raised in Puerto Rico and moved to NYC in 2015. She attends International High School at Union Square where she is known for being a creative, friendly, responsible and kind student. Griselys enjoys reading, writing and listening to music on a calm and rainy day. She wants to attend college in the near future where she can study something involving art and creative writing since that is what she most enjoys doing. She is also considering a minor in business. She decided to join the We Are All Connected project because, she was interested in learning about a rural place where everything is difficult to reach, compared to the city life she resides in. She is also interested in exploring the similarities and connections between rural and urban communities.  For Griselys, it would be ideal for her community to have an eye opening experience before it’s too late and would like to see the communication between communities improve. While we are breathing the same air as the community and working with shared issues, it is important to her that the films she helps produce have the purpose of making a positive impact and changing the way people think. Griselys feels that her role as a filmmaker is behind the camera and having the skills to support the team in any way.  

Serenah grew up in West Palm Beach, Florida and currently lives in New
York City. She enjoys singing, dancing, and cooking, and has always had an interest in filmmaking and photography. She signed up for the We Are All Connected program to meet new people and see how they live in a rural community.

 

Her goal is to use the videos and website related to this project to promote change and inspire others make a difference in their communities. Serenah loves filming, editing, interviewing, and producing. She believes it is increasingly important to establish and maintain the connection between rural and urban areas to avoid division and strengthen relationships.

 
 
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The crew producing their documentary on the drug addiction crisis in Campbell County, TN

We Are All Connected Summer Camp 2017

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The crew producing their documentary on the drug addiction crisis in Campbell County, TN

Summer Camp 2017

Photo Gallery

 
About

The Producers

Historical Archived Films

For 3  summers    in    the    mid    1980s, New    York    City    youth    from    the    Educational    Video    Center    lived,    learned,    and    made documentaries    together    with    rural    youth    in Appalachia’s mining    communities    of    East Tennessee. Turning their    cameras    on    systemic local issues    including chronic    unemployment    and    poverty,    the    teenagers    learned how interconnected    their    urban    and    rural    communities    really    were. Rooted    in    those    powerful    past experiences,    the We Are All Connected project is the revival from the work done in the 1980's. 

New York-Appalachia Student Video Exchange - Interview Show With Students (Episode 1 of 2) 1983

EVC founder and director Steve Goodman interviews student filmmakers Johnny Taveras and Brenda Hinton, who present their videos Artie: Down and Out on the Bowery, Between Avenues C & D: Drugs on the Lower East Side, and Carol and Josephine.  Taped at and originally broadcast by CTV of Knoxville.

History

For 3 summers in the mid 1980's New York City youth from the Educational Video Center lived, learned and made documentaries together with rural youth in Appalachia's mining communities of East Tennessee. Their films focused on chronic unemployment and poverty and allowed the teenagers to experience the connections between their urban and rural communities. The current We Are All Connected project is the revival of this student exchange from over 30 years ago. 

New York-Appalachia Student Video Exchange - Interview Show With Students (Episode 1 of 2) 1983

EVC founder and director Steve Goodman interviews student filmmakers Johnny Taveras and Brenda Hinton, who present their videos Artie: Down and Out on the Bowery, Between Avenues C & D: Drugs on the Lower East Side, and Carol and Josephine.  Taped at and originally broadcast by CTV of Knoxville.

New York-Appalachia Student Video Exchange - Interview Show With Students (Episode 2 of 2)​ 1985

EVC founder and director Steve Goodman interviews student filmmakers Nicole Sulmers, Melinda Gosnell, and Nadine Deaton, who discuss their experience with the New York City-Appalachia Student Video Exchange, and present their video Letta's Family.  Taped at and originally broadcast by CTV of Knoxville.

Film Archive