Fig Tree Charitable Foundation

Fig Tree Charitable Foundation

September 10, 2009 11:00 ET

Fig Tree Foundation: Canadian Premiere of Documentary Raises Questions About Aid to Africa

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Sept. 10, 2009) - Filmmakers Tim and Daniel Klein will take part in a panel discussion after the Canadian premiere of their documentary "What Are We Doing Here?", presented by the Fig Tree Foundation on September 23, 2009. This fundraising event will provide a forum for future discussions and collaborations amongst Calgary-based international development organizations, the Calgary business community and donors.

Charity and aid to Africa and the developing world is a multi-billion dollar industry. In 2007, Canadians donated $10 billion to charitable and non-profit organizations, with 6% going to international organizations. The Canadian government also contributed about $1.9 billion in total international assistance to Africa in 2006 - 2007. Internationally, the figures are much higher. Yet over the last several decades, charity has been ineffective in eliminating poverty.

Daring to ask the questions that no one else will, the Klein family set out on a 15,000-mile journey from Cairo to Capetown. They crossed war torn and famine-ridden regions where aid workers, politicians, and inspiring individuals told about the incredibly complex and often misunderstood issues that affect hundreds of millions of people across the continent.

Despite the poverty and past failures, there are signs of hope and Calgary organizations are taking part in finding solutions. The Fig Tree Foundation (FTF), a Calgary-based group dedicated to helping disadvantaged people around the world, is working to bring about change by fostering collaboration between, and raising funds for, international development organizations. They also host the FTF Round Table, which includes over 40 agencies that come together to raise questions, share ideas and foster cooperation. It is anticipated that this event will act as a catalyst for further discussions within the larger community. FTF and the filmmakers invite the world to rethink the fight against poverty and change the way we look at charity forever.

The Canadian premiere of "What Are We Doing Here?" will be held at 7 p.m in the Eckhardt-Gramatte Concert Hall, Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary and will be followed by a panel discussion with two of the film directors, Tim and Daniel Klein, as well as representatives from the international NGO and Calgary business community. Additional screenings will be held at The Plaza Theatre, beginning September 24, times to be confirmed.

This event is made possible through the support and sponsorship of many businesses including, First Calgary Savings, Collins Barrow, True Energy, Scotia McLeod, and Claryn Securities Inc.

For more information about the premiere event or other showings, see

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