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Africalia mobility grant

Africalia scholarship holders at Fespaco 2023

Fespaco 2023

Read about the experience of Haissetu Sembunu Bianca member of Yolé!Africa and Justine Bitagoyea Pasacc-Bu scholarship holder.

fb_img_1684661806497.jpg"At first it was a bit complicated because it's a vast world. You don't know anyone, nothing is planned in advance for you. You have to try and meet people, target the people who are interesting for the work we do at Yolé !Africa. It took me one or two days, but after that I started meeting more than 10 people, including producers and directors, with whom I had some interesting discussions.

My focus was on our training programme, alternative to TV, supported in particular by Africalia. In this programme we bring in film professionals to give various training courses. I also watched films with a view to programming screenings for the Ishango Encounters programme, dedicated to re-imagining the place of art in the contemporary world.

At Yolé! Africa, we also support young people making films. Being at Fespaco was an opportunity to find ways of distributing these films.

Taking part in this festival really opens you up to the world, to the pan-African world. This mobility grant has enabled me to position our work in relation to what's being done elsewhere in Africa and build bridges between structures for future collaborations. Thank you Africalia!


Justine Bitagoye is a Burundian journalist and film-maker. In her view, Fespaco is a major vehicle for the creation and distribution of African cinema. "It's an honour to be able to take part thanks to Africalia through the Pasacc-bu project. This mobility opportunity has enabled me to broaden the scope of what's possible, because as a film professional in Burundi, we don't have the opportunity to create a network, talk to other creative people and visit cinemas. We're not in the habit of going to the cinema like the Burkinabe, who fill their cinemas. I had the opportunity to present a documentary a few years ago here in Ougadougou. It was a re-discovery and it enabled me to reconnect with filmmakers with whom I had lost all contact, and I noticed the giant step forward that has been taken between us, but it encourages me to come back in 2025 with something to present".

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