In our urban environment, we see people with big trolleys filled with materials meant for recycling. We firstly get angry because they’re in the road when we’re driving, or we assume that some of them are hiding stolen goods at the bottom of these trolleys, and that’s only if we acknowledge them.

Seeing the documentary Non-People will give you perspective as to how these people really live. “The film is based on a Poem by Don Mattera titled “We see them”. We (Wesley Rhode, Lo’rell Simons, Vusani Mutsila, Daniel Martins and myself) were inspired by the poem and decided to shoot a short story about the people in our society who are often ignored and missed yet they go about their daily lives doing what needs to be done to survive” says Kevin Narain, one of the producers of this documentary.

The film was entered into the Don’t Stop Wondering competition hosted by The Jozi Film Festival and Discovery Channel. The brief was to shoot a film of 2-5 minutes showcasing the “spirit of curiosity”. A curiosity shared not only in Africa but on a global scale as Kevin explains.

“In every community and society around the world, poverty exists. What is interesting is that the individuals who go about collecting items to recycle are no different to someone working a job behind a desk. Similar to other countries and metropolitan areas around the world, they go about doing what needs to be done and this is important because we should regard these people are part of our society, they can’t be ignored.”

The aim of this film is to make people aware of those around them. Non-People provides a voice for these people and gives them a platform to be heard. “Personally I wanted to tell a story, any story. When Wesley Rhode approached me about two years ago to do a photo series I was blown away by this unfamiliar concept. Not many people told this story. Don Mattera is an amazing poet and his poetry moves me every time and I had to be a part of this project.”

Going about a project like this makes a direct impact on those involved. Something that Kevin took away from this experience was never to “take anyone or anything for granted. People have their own stories of why they are. Circumstances lead people to where they are now and we can’t place judgment on them for being who they are.”

“Non People” is in the top 10 of The JFF/Discovery Channel Don’t Stop Wondering competition. It will be airing on Discovery Channel on DStv Channel 121 at the following times:
Tuesday      8th August at 20:00
Monday     14th August at 13:35
Thursday    24th August at 20:00
You can help them win the competition by voting for the “Non-People”. All need to do is click HERE!