Friendship Tours World Travel, a Santa Barbara based educational tour company founded by Alethea Tyner Paradis, a local teacher and Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award winner, is featured with her students in a 2013 Emmy-nominated documentary film. An ABC News-produced documentary, Power of a Picture, was filmed in Santa Barbara and Vietnam and highlights the educational value of the photo of the iconic “Napalm Girl” for today’s students, 40 years after the Vietnam War.
The photo of Kim Phuc was Life Magazine’s cover image from June 1972. Historians credit it with helping end the Vietnam War. Symbolizing what words cannot convey, the iconic image of “Napalm Girl” still instructs us about the impact of photojournalism.
The documentary, Power of a Picture, fuses historical footage and modern analysis of the accidental bombing, examining the significance of the photograph then and now.
The documentary features Santa Barbara students and teachers traveling to the site of Kim’s tragic injury in Vietnam. The group visits with Kim’s surviving family, interviews veterans, photographers and witnesses. Ultimately, students understand the war through the lens of courageous journalism.
Alethea Tyner Paradis, a history teacher, founded Friendship Tours in 2005 to give her students an immersive educational experience lacking in mainstream youth tours. “It occurred to me and other like-minded educators that our nation hadn’t learned many important lessons from our controversial military adventures in SE Asia.” Recognizing a need for meaningful experiential education about the legacy of warfare, Tyner Paradis developed an integrative program that invites students to understand war–and the benefits of negotiated peace–from the perspective of people who live with its aftermath.
For several years Tyner Paradis has taken her students to visit and befriend Kim’s family in the city of Trang Bang. In 2012, Kim, who now lives in Canada, accepted Tyner Paradis’s invitation to share her story with Santa Barbara at the Lobero Theater to mark the 40-year anniversary of the photograph.
In addition to Vietnam, Friendship Tours has expanded with youth tours to Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Cuba and Rwanda. Tyner Paradis now directs Friendship Tours year-round.
“By learning history’s lessons first-hand from those living with the legacy of war, students are better equipped to participate as ethical citizens of a global community.” Tyner Paradis says.
In May, Power of a Picture won the 2013 Edward R. Murrow award in regional market television broadcast.
To see the Emmy-nominated documentary Power of a Picture go to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xoq-_jj1x6Q&feature=youtu.be (26 mins)
An excerpt of the film is also available at http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/video?id=8654269
and from the Friendship Tours website, http://www.friendshiptoursworld.com