DCEFF Programmer Arjumand Hamid joined the Festival staff in 2012 from the National Gallery of Art, where she coordinated cultural outreach programs for families and children.
At EFF, she works to provide free, accessible public programs to DC residents with a focus on youth. Arjumand has a Bachelor’s Degree in Art History, Political Science and South Asian Studies from the University of Toronto and a Master’s Degree in Museum Studies from Johns Hopkins University.
What brought you to EFF?
I grew up locally and have always loved coming into the city to attend public events. I wanted a career focused on providing opportunities for families to learn together. At EFF, I’m now able to plan programs across Washington, DC for people from all walks of life.
What is EFF doing to make programs accessible to underserved communities in Washington, DC?
Making our programs be widely available to people of diverse backgrounds is very important to us. I am proud that we have taken the initiative in reaching out to residents in all eight wards of the city through community centers such as THEARC, local libraries and universities, and by hosting screenings for local public school students. These free EFF programs have built our reputation for providing accessible, free educational programs for all ages and backgrounds.
How does family and school group programming figure into the 2016 Festival?
Family and school programming is a key aspect of the Festival. For nearly 10 years, we have presented a free pre-Festival screening at the Warner Theatre, attended by 1,700 DC public and charter school students and their teachers. This year we will show An American Ascent, documenting the first African-American expedition to climb North America’s highest peak, Mt. Denali. A post-screening discussion will allow students to ask questions about the subject and the filmmaking process.
What role do embassies play in programming EFF?
Foreign embassies in DC have always been integral and enthusiastic Festival partners, bringing impressive environmental films from their countries. Most screenings are followed by receptions, allowing visitors to experience a country’s culture at venues they may not have been able to visit otherwise.
What’s your favorite film (/kind of film) that’s been shown at EFF?
I really appreciate community-based films, where people take the initiative to solve environmental problems together.