I have a vision! I am standing on top of a mountain, tears flowing down my eyes at the beauty bestowed on us humans. Standing tall in complete awe at the magnificence of the trees, the roots, the rocks, the lakes, the rivers, the streams, the animals, the insects, the leaves, the breeze, the mud, the glaciers, the mountains, the moss, the sun, the rain. Feeling one with our Mother Nature, humbled by her healing powers, and knowing that she can heal me. I wanted to live out this vision, and had absolutely no idea how.
I embarked on my first journey in 2017. Very long story short, I was unprepared, I was unaware, and had a traumatic and dangerous experience during my first overnight hiking trip. In that moment, laying on the snow in July, in wet clothes, as the sun was setting, with no direction of where to go, I broke down. My entire body went into shock, shivering, screaming, crying, I thought I was going to die. Anxiety is no joke. In that moment, that vision was nothing but a fairy tale I was never going to experience. My spirit was broken, my trust in myself, others, and Mother Nature herself was fleeting. I cancelled myself, I was never going outdoors again.
Fast forward a couple of years, I dedicated my life to my healing. Emotionally, physically, spiritually. Slowly facing my fears of the outdoors, learning to trust my body again, and taking on smaller outdoor adventures. I started embracing the idea that the vision is not dead. I began to feel like my dream is not far fetched. I needed community, support, and radical self love.
I did not see myself in the outdoors. People with the same lived experiences as me; people who had the same skin colour as me; people who had a similar body shape as me. BIPOC, Queer folx, where are our stories? I began to ask why? Why are we not represented? Blogs, magazines, ads, Instagram, billboards - Where are the people who looked like me? Are they not doing all this cool outdoor stuff too? Then I came across Colour The Trails - and found the community I was looking for all along, the space for me to face my fears, and stand on top of a mountain. To do things, I only imagined I would do. That is the power of representation!
Growing up in Cairo, Egypt, immigrating to Canada with my family at 10 years old, I felt like an outsider. Immigrant life is a very different life. I did not grow up with any basic outdoors or wilderness knowledge. I had no idea how to hike, canoe, put up a tent, start a fire, you know all the outdoorsy things. But I had the vision, so I slowly built my basic skills and I set out to be the example people like me need!
I have a dream to get to the top of the mountains AND take you all with me AND show the world that nothing is too far-fetched. You can do ANY thing. Can you tell I am stoked!
Welcome to The IRONSELF MOVIE!!!!!
A DREAM COME TRUE!!!!
I am the winner and recipient of the 2021 VIMFF Adventure Film Movie Grant powered by Arcteryx - check it out Here
The IronSelf movie will be premiered at the Vancouver International Mountain Film Festival in Feb 2022!!!!!!
I am inviting you all on the journey of self healing, self discovery, self triumph, community care, and the power of representation. The final film will document the raw and authentic journey of how to do what once seemed like a distant vision. To stand on top of the mountain in complete awe of Mother Nature and all her glory. To take up space, to be unapologetically oneself, to challenge systems, and to learn to believe in the power of self and community!
Nothing is impossible my friends - The IronSelf Movie
I have secured the first grant of $5000 generously supported by Arcteryx and VIMFF!
I need YOUR support and help of community to make this powerful film.
I am fundraising to bring this movie vision to life. With a very tight timeline, we are ready to start filming ASAP! I need your help.
Funds will cover:
* Pre-production (e.g permits, production crew, deposits, insurance, marketing, gear, travel)
* Production (e.g camera crew, sound crew, technical gear, per diem, director)
* Post-production (e.g editing, marketing, colouring, music, engineering)
Crew members, cast, advisors, mentors - are all BIPOC/LGBTQ2S/Allies
Supporting this vision means the world to me! We can radically transform the world! One short documentary at a time.
With your funds:
* I will be able to pay ALL creatives on the project their well earned and deserved rate!
* I will be able to invest in sharing BIPOC stories! LGBTQ2S stories! Immigrant stories! yes - it is all about that intersectionality! - through IronSelf Movie
* I will be able fulfill a vision and show up for my community and show them what IS possible!
* I will be able to create a powerful documentary that will premier at the Vancouver International Mountain Film Festival in Feb 2022! Yes - that's right!
Every dollar counts!
Donations of $200+ will receive an IronSelf Movie T-shirt
Donations of $500+ will receive above + 1 life coaching session with Eman
Donations of $1500+ will receive all above + an honourable mention in the movie
Will you join this vision with me?
I am eternally grateful for the EPIC humans that have supported me thus far, and I thank you deeply for being here with me on this journey!
Our radical vulnerability (asking for money) and our compassionate curiosity (I think I can make a huge impact - are our human super powers! Let's use them. Let's radically transform the world!
Thank you for your support for the IronSelf Movie! Thank you thank you thank you! Stay
If you want more information - please reach out to me!
- Tehraun Essue
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