For Immediate Release

Refugee Services of Texas to Host Exclusive Documentary Screening of Successful Refugee Education Model in Missouri

Panel discussion with film director Lori Miller and RST’s refugee clients will follow the screening

AUSTIN, Texas (January 29, 2019) – On Thursday, February 28, Refugee Services of Texas, one of the nation’s leading refugee resettlement agencies, will host a limited 200-ticket debut of the award-winning documentary Day One at the Alamo Drafthouse on South Lamar in Austin.

Tickets to the special screening are available for purchase online.

Day One chronicles a group of teens from war zones in the Middle East and Africa as they are resettled in St. Louis, Missouri, and enrolled at a unique public school designed exclusively for refugee education.

Filmed over the course of a year, the documentary features school children from Somalia, Afghanistan, the Congo, Iraq, and Syria as they progress through layers of grief and loss, forge new friendships, and prepare to be mainstreamed into public high schools.

“We are thrilled to be screening a film that not only exudes positivity but that showcases the everyday sacrifices and commitments that ordinary people make to bettering the lives of refugees in America, especially at such an uncertain time for refugees who are wondering if they will be allowed to resettle in our country,” said Russell Smith, LMSW, the CEO of Refugee Services of Texas. “The incredible success stories of the kids featured in Day One demonstrate the incalculable impact America can have on the people of the world when we extend a helping hand to those most in need.”

Produced and directed by Lori Miller, a first-generation American and daughter of a refugee, Day One gives viewers an inside look into the lives of the students enrolled at The Nahed Chapman New American Academy in St. Louis who are participating in its groundbreaking educational model. Serving grades K-10, Chapman Academy focuses its resources on creating an optimal learning environment for kids with PTSD, interrupted education, and limited English to stabilize and keep them in school.

“This is an amazing opportunity not only to support a trailblazing institution like Refugee Services of Texas, but also to expose the public to what really goes on in the lives of refugee youth who arrive in a foreign country and must contend with every kind of adversity one can imagine,” said Miller. “My personal hope is that the compassion and solutions presented in this film will spark a nationwide movement to lovingly and intelligently integrate refugees into the social fabric of their new homes.”

The screening begins at 6:30 p.m. and will be followed by a panel discussion with Miller and RST refugee clients. All proceeds from ticket sales will go directly to Refugee Services of Texas to serve refugees, asylees, and survivors of human trafficking. Tickets include a $10 food and drink voucher to use at Alamo Drafthouse during the event. Tickets may be purchased here. Corporate sponsorships are available.


RST's Unaccompanied Children Program serves kids who are released from immigration detention centers but don't have any parental or guardian support in the United States. RST provides home studies to ensure the homes the children are placed in are suitable and case management for the children to get them access to support services like mental healthcare, food assistance, and education.

This program is already seeing an influx of clients due to the "Zero Tolerance" immigration policies currently in place. We need your help to ensure we have enough staff and resources to help these children.




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