CHILDREN of the Snow Land tells the story of a group of children born in the High Himalayas of Nepal, a remote area of great natural beauty but where life is seriously tough. From just four years old, some children are sent by their parents to the capital city, Kathmandu, to a school run by a Buddhist monk in the hope that education will give them a better chance in life. For ten years or more they do not see or speak to their parents, due to the remoteness of their villages.

Showing at Zeffirellis at Ambleside on Wednesday, October 17 (8pm), the award-winning movie documents their scary, moving, funny and humbling stories and is directed by Zara Balfour and Marcus Stephenson, executive produced by Christopher Hird, MD of Dartmouth Films, and partly filmed by the Nepali children featured in the film, whom the directors trained in film making.

The children offer a view of a remote, ancient place, with insight into Nepali culture and into the hearts and minds of children who grew up wondering why their parents sent them away.

Zara and Marcus said that when they found out that many Himalayan children don't get to see their parents for 10-12 years while at school in the city their were compelled to bring their story to the screen. "We trained the students in film making so that they could tell their story directly and intimately. We then travelled and filmed with them as they returned home.

"Imagine the heartbreaking choice to send a child away so that they can have a better life, and the pain experienced by these children growing up away from home thinking that their parents didn’t love them enough to keep them.

"The journey was emotionally charged and physically tough, involving over 300 miles of trekking on foot through the high Himalayas - the only way to reach these remote mountain villages. Returning to their homeland and parents offered the children tremendous healing, understanding - and wisdom beyond what most of us would have at that age.

We hope that the film can help in a practical way by driving awareness and support so that many more children get the chance to return home. ”

Described by Joanna Lumley as "stunning," the film landed the Best Documentary Feature at this year's UK Premiere London Independent Film Festival and was winner of Best Film Non-Fiction International at the Nepal Human Rights International Film Festival 2017.

Zeffirellis 015394-33845.