The Refuge Team. From Left: Elliot Ross, Rosanna Bach, Matteo Zevi, Matthew K. Firpo, Jake Saner, Haris Katsigiannis, Stephen Michael Simon. Not Pictured: Maximilian Guen


The Refuge Project was born from a desire to learn more. We had watched the news, heard the reports, and seen the photos of despair and loss from the shores of the Aegean, but we were left wanting to know more about the people living these headlines.

We wanted to know more about their stories, about what they had lost, what they had left behind, and where they hoped their lives were headed. While news coverage focused on the problem, it often forgot about the human being, so we set out to discover a human story.

The world was changing and we found ourselves at a crossroads in history. We wanted to help in the best way we knew, so we began to document what we saw, and the stories of the people we met. In January 2016, over several weeks on location in Greece, we created The Refuge Project, a multimedia chronicle of human stories from the European refugee crisis, focused on humanity and hope.

The Refuge Project is Matthew K. FirpoRosanna BachElliot RossStephen Michael SimonJake Saner, Haris Katsigiannis, Matteo Zevi, and Maximilian Guen.

REFUGE is a Magna Carta Special Project.


SXSW, Camera Image, Flickers Rhode Island International Film Festival, Savannah Film Festival, St Louis International Film Festival, Leeds International Film Festival, Oxford Film Festival, Tampere Film Festival


Santa Barbara International Film Festival - Best Documentary Short
Indie FilmFest - Humanitarian Outstanding Achievement Award