We, Melinda Micco and Chihiro Wimbush are co-directors working on a one-hour documentary, "Every Step A Prayer: The Refinery Corridor Healing Walks" about a group of Indigenous Grandmothers (and the young women they are mentoring) who respond to a toxic explosion at a local oil refinery and the escalating global climate crisis, by leading a series of Healing Walks through the "sacrifice zones" of the Refinery Corridor here in the San Francisco Bay Area.
This inspirational story is about communities coming together and rising up against the fossil fuel industry that is poisoning their land, water and air. It focuses on the leadership of strong, Indigenous women in a local action that is part of a global movement. Ultimately it is a film about possibility and hope for the future in the face of the ever-increasing and urgent climate chaos, from the growing devastation of the fires here in California, to the environmental catastrophes affecting people all over the world.
The film documents the all-volunteer group Idle No More SF Bay organizing and completing walks along the Refinery Corridor over four years in the San Francisco Bay Area. Led by Indigenous elders the walks, between 9 to 13 miles each through refinery communities, were inspiration for local actions addressing the disasters of fossil fuel extraction as well as those throughout the United States and in Canada.
Idle No More SF Bay founded in 2013 continues to be a major catalyst for various actions with Indigenous grandmothers in leadership roles. The group is committed to a just transition from fossil fuels and ensuring that countries move rapidly toward solutions for climate chaos. Additionally, Idle No More is committed to the transference of traditional Indigenous knowledge to the next generation.
Our hope in sharing this story is to inspire other communities into taking action, to honor the wisdom of Indigenous elders and show the strength of matriarchy, and illustrate the power of their spirit from their ancestors and positive vision for a better future.
We have completed all filming and are currently half way through the edit process: we have a half hour rough cut of the first half of the film. With your valuable contribution we can complete editing for the second half of the film and finalize the cut, as well as add the elements that will enhance the film (music, archival images and graphics) and make it ready for viewing (sound mixing, color correction and production of high quality file for exhibition) at a film festival or screen near you. We are grateful for your support in helping bring this vital story to light and to spread this inspiring message for future generations!
Chihiro Wimbush is an Emmy-nominated filmmaker and creative media maker who is passionate about documenting and sharing stories that change how we view each other and the world we live in. www.chihirowimbush.com
Dr. Melinda Micco (Seminole/Creek/Choctaw) is an Associate Professor Emerita from Mills College. She produced the documentary "Killing the 7th Generation: Reproductive Abuses Against Indigenous Women" and is working on book Seminole Voices in Indian Country.
The funds needed to complete the film are as follows: