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Our documentary explores the sacredness of water and how the industrialization of the Navajo Nation continues to disrupt our traditional way of life. We feel it is important for our audience to visually experience a piece of the Navajo Way Of Life. It is vital to the documentary to include the connection between Navajo Mythology and the importance of the lands that have been desecrated by industrial development.
Many Navajo families do not have access to potable running water and are forced to haul unregulated and untreated water for their daily needs. Many elderly Navajo’s are forced to allow livestock to drink from toxic water sources, thus contributing to numerous health risks among families throughout the Navajo Reservation.
From a youth perspective we’re telling a story of a Navajo Philosophy that is being endangered by an overwhelming change in politics, resource management and modern society. We understand the obligations our ancestors passed onto us and have devoted much of our time to tell this story about our people.
Jake and I have been working on the documentary since Mid-2010. Throughout our travels we have met people who have been exposed to uranium and have since developed cancer. It’s heartbreaking for us to witness how close to home this issue has become. We feel so connected with these issues, that we have dedicated nearly all of our time and personal resources to this story.
Both Jake and I have lost grandparents to uranium, to cancer, and we each feel an obligation to use our skills as filmmakers to capture the stories of our people. So that somewhere down the road, when we ourselves are old, we can tell these stories of the importance of the land, and the water that binds us together.
Make contact with Paper Rocket Productions at
Water is Life is an inside film job by Deidra Peaches and Jake Hoyungowa. Please consider putting some fresh water in their film tanks. Change adds up when we share. Time is short so share however you can now. Where’s that Tweety-bird?
What’s in your water?
Shemekia Copeland’s “Dirty Water” at the Blue Mountain Blues Festival in Danielsville, PA, 2011.