Drama - Development 2016

    • Year of production
    • 2016
    • Genres
    • Drama
    • Countries
    • Languages
    • Producer(s)
    • Synopsis
    • Addis Ababa - Ethiopia

      Biruk and his friends only know one way of life – the instinctual need to survive. At a young age Biruk was taught to speak English by his father, giving him an advantage over other children. Always wanting better for himself and his family, Biruk wakes up at 6am each morning to make sure his three sisters have what they need to go to school everyday. Biruk then makes his way downtown with his friends Dawate, Micelle and Abel. From shining shoes to guiding tourists around the streets of Addis Ababa, they’ll do anything it takes to earn a living for their families’ survival.

      One day, while working in the streets, Biruk and his friends notice an unfamiliar luxury vehicle stopping in front of a house.

      As a man exits the vehicle a family runs out of the house to greet him with overwhelming excitement. Drawn by the luxury vehicle and the man’s expensive looking attire, Biruk and his friends are curious and get closer. The man approaches them. The man is Nahom, an older gentleman wearing flashy clothes and jewelry. Nahom tells Biruk and his friends he has a way out of Ethiopia, giving them the opportunity to live the dream they have only heard stories about - the America dream. Nahom tells them he has helped thousands of young Ethiopians get out of Ethiopia. For a price of $400 he promises to arrange a boat ride to Yemen where everything will be set up to take them to Saudi Arabia where they can work and make an income before leaving to the United States. He promises them an easy way out and assures them that they would have well paying jobs, money and chance for a better future.

      Biruk having big dreams and very little resources has many sleepless nights thinking of a way out of Africa. Since Biruk, Dawate, Micelle Abel share the same dream - to support their families – they decide to take the opportunity and leave Ethiopia.

      After months of working to save money, Biruk and his friends make their payments of $400 each. They bid farewell to their families and begin their journey.

      The friends ride in a small boat, crammed with 15 others and finally make it across the river to Yemen. Upon arrival to Yemen they quickly realize they have become victims of human trafficking. As Biruk and his friends continue their journey by walking 500 km (40 days) to Saudi Arabia, they are captured by corrupt Yemen soldiers and sold to a gang who tortures and holds them for ransom. Biruk, Dawate Micelle and Abel go through unbearable suffering while their dreams of better lives turn into a dreams of simple survival.
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