19 October 2020 News Releases

Panel will Tackle Challenges Around Global Health, Social Justice and COVID-19

The founders of Partners In Health, a nonprofit social justice organization with deep experience in treating infectious disease outbreaks globally, will tackle this question – and more – in a free virtual event hosted by EdTech leader ProQuest and documentary curator FILM PLATFORM

ANN ARBOR, MI, October 19, 2020 – Is it possible to fight infectious disease like COVID-19 – and create a more just world in the process? The founders of Partners In Health, a nonprofit social justice organization with deep experience in treating infectious disease outbreaks globally, will tackle this question – and more – in a free virtual event hosted by EdTech leader ProQuest and documentary curator FILM PLATFORM.

The event took place October 22 at 7:00 p.m. ET and featured Dr. Paul Farmer, Ophelia Dahl and Dr. Jim Yong Kim and moderated by Tabitha Jackson, director of The Sundance Film Festival. Participants came away with a renewed sense of optimism about the future of global healthcare.

Partners In Health is the subject of the award-winning documentary Bending the Arc from executive producers Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, and Damon & Heidi Lindelof. The film tells the story of the organization’s founders, who began a movement in the 1980s that changed global health forever. All participants are encouraged to watch the film beforehand for context.

"Sundance Institute is dedicated to bringing exceptional documentary film to new audiences globally and fostering the kinds of conversations they inspire,” said moderator Tabitha Jackson. “We are thrilled to be working with FILM PLATFORM and ProQuest to bring Bending the Arc to students and faculty around the world by sponsoring a lively discussion with the unforgettable characters in this gripping and timely film.”

"We know that when people watch Bending the Arc, they are not only deeply affected by the inspiring story of Dr. Paul Farmer and friends, they also develop a new understanding of how optimism coupled with dogged perseverance can – and must – reshape global health," said Francesco De Flaviis, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer at Partners In Health. "We are beyond excited that the film will be shared with students and faculty around the world on FILM PLATFORM through ProQuest. We hope everyone will watch the movie and join Paul, Ophelia and Jim for a lively conversation. As Paul says, ‘Optimism is a moral choice; we must all reject despair and cynicism.’”

“ProQuest is deeply honored to host this event with FILM PLATFORM and the founders of Partners In Health, who are pioneers in affecting change,” said Chris Burghardt, Senior Vice President and General Manager, ProQuest Information Solutions. “Our goal is to empower attendees to look at the issues in their own communities and gain strategies to advocate for their most vulnerable neighbors.”

“As curators of the world’s most extraordinary documentary films, we are thrilled to showcase Bending the Arc,” said Elinor Kowarsky, CEO of FILM PLATFORM. “We know that an artfully crafted film worthy of a Sundance premiere has the power to engage viewers in experiential learning that lasts a lifetime. With this event, our partners at ProQuest aim to heighten that experience even further with a discussion with these heroic characters whose work is more relevant now than ever before.”

About the Event Partners

Partners In Health is a global social justice organization now leveraging its more than 30 years of experience to fight the coronavirus pandemic globally and in the U.S. and to advocate for equitable health systems.

Sundance Institute believes that a story driven by an individual, authentic voice can awaken new ideas that have the power to delight and entertain, push creative boundaries, spark new levels of empathy and understanding, and even lead to social change. The Sundance Institute supports independent storytellers and advances the impact of their work in the world.

FILM PLATFORM is an exclusive collection of the most prestigious documentary films streaming for academic use, available through ProQuest.

ro*co films, a partner of FILM PLATFORM, is a leading educational distributor of documentary films specializing in impact and engagement.

About ProQuest (about.proquest.com)

ProQuest supports the important work in the world’s research and learning communities. The company curates six centuries of content – the world’s largest collection of journals, ebooks, primary sources, dissertations, news, and video – and builds powerful workflow solutions to help libraries acquire and grow collections that inspire extraordinary outcomes. ProQuest products and services are used in academic, K-12, public, corporate and government libraries in 150 countries.

Along with its companies and affiliates Ex Libris, Alexander Street, and Bowker, ProQuest helps its customers achieve better research, better learning and better insights. For more information, visit our ProQuest and Extraordinary Stories blogs, and follow us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.