A new documentary film “Inspire Me! Africa” takes audience members on a journey with University of Colorado Denver students and alumni who are teachers by profession. They travel through the heart of Africa’s Serengeti with its dramatic biological diversity, to Maasai villages, Tanzanian schools and AIDS orphanages for interactions with the people and cultures of Africa. And, group members trek to the giant volcano, Mount Kilimanjaro. The film also follows the subjects back into their U.S. classrooms to explore how their extraordinary experiences in Africa translate into inspiration for their students.

The premiere will take place on Friday, Dec. 14, at 6 p.m. in theTivoli Turnhalle on the Auraria Campus.

“Inspire Me! Africa” is directed by Brad McLain of CU Denver’s Experiential Science Education Research Collaborative (XSci) within the School of Education & Human Development. Anthropologist Jane Goodall makes an appearance in the film to share a story about her most inspirational teacher. In addition, “Inspire Me! Africa” features Evergreen Middle School teacher, Leslie Jankausky, who passed away in a tragic car accident following her trip to Africa.

“This film is both a celebration of the art of teaching and a powerful call-to-action to do it better. It’s about how inspiration happens through extraordinary experiences,” explains Teresa Bell McLain, producer of “Inspire Me! Africa” and vice president of marketing and strategy at XSci.

This film premiere serves as a fundraiser for the African schools and orphanages visited in the film, as well as the creation of a Jane Goodall Roots and Shoots Colorado-based program at CU Denver. The Roots and Shoots program will create a venue for Colorado teachers and students to take action through projects that benefit the welfare of people, animals and the environment.

Tickets are $25 for students and teachers. Premium tickets are $100. For more information and tickets, please visit: www.xscifundraiser.org.

Gaiam will be sponsoring a table of eight teachers to attend the event for free, so be sure to check for the free option when you purchase your ticket. Check out Gaiam.tv for the film online after the premiere.

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