As one of the three founders of White Tara Productions (www.whitetaraproductions.com), Catherine Boyle worked as a volunteer producer, director and editor on documentary films shot in Bangladesh, Honduras, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Ghana, Thailand, Bulgaria, Italy and the U.S.
The focus of White Tara Productions was consistently on humanitarian and social issues that do not receive adequate coverage in the mainstream media.
Based in Ireland since 2009, she continues to work on volunteer video projects.
A native of Boston, Massachusetts (USA), I have lived in Europe since 2003. My educational background is in political science (specifically, Sovietology), documentary filmmaking and non-profit management.
Note: I am a firm and enthusiastic believer in international solidarity! All of the documentary film projects featured both on this website and on that of White Tara Productions were carried out on a volunteer basis for the purpose of public education and information. No external funding whatsoever was involved.
In addition to the documentary film projects featured on this site, I am passionate about taking part in microfinance initiatives via www.kiva.org, where my personal lender page is www.kiva.org/lender/catherine34657065. In March of 2012 I had the opportunity to visit the first of our Kiva micro-loans, through Tamweelcom in the city of Madaba, Jordan. Please feel free to visit my Jordan Page for more information about this visit!
Out of concern regarding the (in my opinion) excessively high interest rates being charged by some of Kiva's field partners, I began to explore other options for this type of giving - specifically, the U.K.-based organization Deki, Zidisha and Lend With Care. So far so good, on all fronts; Deki is of particular interest to me, as no interest is charged to borrowers: local loan officers' salaries / other overhead expenses are raised via the organization's U.K. headquarters. Moreover, Deki has a local partner in Magwi County, South Sudan - a place which is very dear to my heart.
Sadly, 2014 went down in my personal life history as the year in which I officially and definitively became disillusioned with institutional giving to large-scale NGOs - this after 20 years of sponsoring children around the world through various organizations and having had the privilege of personally meeting five of those fifteen children. To read more on this topic, please click here.
Finally, in collaboration with a Nigerian friend and colleague, I recently co-authored an article concerning the ongoing Boko Haram insurgency in northeastern Nigeria. This extremely disturbing situation is receiving little or no coverage in the mainstream media (at least, in Western countries). Please click here to read the text of this article.
Update as of the end of 2015:
Film-making took a back seat this year, as my focus recently has been studying the Chinese language (Mandarin), Chinese history and archeology. However, an idea for a short animated film is developing at the back of my mind, and I hope that it will come to fruition during 2016.
Meanwhile, we made two trips to Portugal, one to the Algarve and the other to the elegant city of Lisbon. Click on the image below to see the full-size version of this photo of Lisbon's Rua Augusta Arch.
In the summer of 2015 I spent a week in Donegal (the Irish county from which a good number of my ancestors hailed), continuing my Irish language studies. While the course itself was nothing to write home about, the landscape was absolutely stunning! Click on the image below to enlarge it.
Ironically, my experience in Donegal echoes many of the mixed feelings surrounding the Irish language - and much of the confusion - explored in our 2014 documentary "Do You Speak Irish?", which may be viewed here.