SSI News Blog

A short documentary film based on a day in the life of Bassam Jabar, a SSI Ignite entrepreneur, has won four awards in the 22nd Sydney Film School Festival, at the July 15 awards night held at the Chauvel Cinema, Paddington.

  SSI Ignite entrepreneur Bassam Jabar

‘Bassam’ won the Best Director, Best Cinematographer, Best Producer and Best Courage, Curiosity and Compassion awards.

Mr Jabar came to Australia as a refugee in 2012 and was supported by SSI through its Humanitarian Settlement Service program.

Mr Jabar is a passionate artist and his talent and desire to promote and sell his art has been fostered and facilitated by the SSI Ignite Small Business Start-ups initiative.

Documentary director Ramy Daniel, of refugee background himself, said he was really excited and surprised by the win.

“I think it’s the first time that a semester one diploma student has entered the awards and won, so I’m pretty happy,” said Mr Daniel.

Mr Daniel met Mr Jabar outside a church in Liverpool and knew straight away that his idea to film him was worth pitching to his teacher that he should enter the competition.

“I lean towards documentary making because my English isn’t great and documentaries don’t need a script - they tell their own story,” Mr Daniel said.

“I chose to make ‘Bassam’ in an artistic way, without dialogue or much sound, because you can tell so much more with images than words, and I wanted to leave the viewer wondering who Bassam is and wanting to get to know him, instead of me telling his story for him.

Find out more about Ignite here


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Hameed studying with a tutor.

My name is Hameed Cina. My life in Australia today is the life of a normal citizen, ordinary by any standard. I’m married, I have two young daughters and I have a good job that I love. I also volunteer a lot of my free time for my community. But the way in which I arrived at this point in my life was definitely not ordinary.

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