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Rising from the Ashes

Combating social isolation.

About the film

The Dépanneur Sylvestre in Gatineau, Quebec, was founded 20 years ago to address the growing number of people experiencing social isolation. Destroyed by a fire three years ago, it has now reopened using new models of sustainability to stay relevant for another 20 years and beyond.

Sara Ben-Saud

Sara Ben-Saud

Nicolas Paquette

Francis Leduc

Andrés Solis

Alexandre Pariseau

11 min

About the Director

Sara Ben-Saud

Sara Ben-Saud

Winner of Culture Outaouais’ Emerging Artist of the Year Award (2020), Sara’s artistic curiosity is nourished by her Quebec-Libyan-Tunisian origins. Her thirst to meet her roots and different cultures inspires her in the conception of her productions. Sara Ben-Saud has worked as a director and writer on the documentary series Skindigenous about Indigenous tattooing traditions worldwide. She has completed intensive training in directing at L'inis in the new mixed program—covering fi ction and documentary—with a grant from Netflix (2021). At the same time, she directed the documentary À toi Jeddi about her Libyan roots, produced by Nish Media and funded by SODEC and CALQ (2023). She has just completed two short documentaries as producer, writer, and director—one with the financial support of Reel Canada and Netflix, selected at the RIDM festival and the other commissioned and selected by Hot Docs (2023). She proudly traveled to Tunisia in November (2022) to accept the award Tanit of Bronze during the film festival JCC. Navigating between fiction and documentary, TV and film, she worked with major broadcasters such as TVO, TV5, Radio-Canada, PBS, and APTN at a young age. Sara wishes to change Quebec's audiovisual landscape on the question of diversity. The young director firmly believes that this change begins with the subjects she decides to present in front of the camera and the team behind and in front of the camera. With representation being at the heart of her practice, she hopes that future generations will be able to recognize themselves on our screens and in this industry.

Artist Statement

What touched me immediately when I heard the stories about the Espace DEP Sylvestre was the major impact that this place has on many people. I discovered a poignant collective discourse and more importantly two decades of history!

It is important for me to tell this story because social isolation is a reality of our society and our time. The different protagonists in the DEP Space allow us to move from the individual to the community and take an important step.

I also realized how much good volunteering can do. It’s a break from the usual routine of working without a monetary reward. Here, it is the human solidarity that is at the forefront and the satisfaction that it brings.

I find this place very touching because the testimonies are endless. It is rare to see such an inclusive place. I invite you to open up and let yourself be inspired by the faces of the Espace DEP Sylvestre!

People seated in a large hall