Hilbert Students Help Out Peace House

By Jamie Diakakis

This past February, students from COM180 Advanced Multimedia Explorations visited Peace House, a shelter for refugees and families seeking asylum, to help out the non-profit organization that serves the Greater Buffalo Area.

Since 2013, Peace House has been helping families in need by supplying safe housing and services while they are waiting for US residency, which could take anywhere from six to sixteen months. According to the UN Refugee Agency, approximately 22.5 million people around the world are refugees seeking asylum, while over 65.6 million are forced from their homes, according to The UN Refugee Agency study, “Figures at a Glance.”

IMG_7952The goal was to help increase the organization’s work by gathering footage for a short informative video that addresses what Peace House does for families looking for liberation.

After arriving on site, the class split into groups to start gathering footage. Some went outdoors into the brisk cold to capture the building’s exterior with the DMAC lab’s DSLR cameras, while others undertook using a drone for aerial footage.

The other half gathered interior footage, such residents cooking and reading who masked their identities during the shoot; it was vital to keep their confidentiality during the process of filming.


As part of Hilbert’s Blueprint, service learning is a key component that all students must complete at some point during their college journey. Service learning projects are a part of Hilbert and the Franciscan values in many ways, but primarily because they tie into the curriculum of the various classes as well as meeting the need of helping out in the community.

The Hilbert College class thought an informative video would be a great way to help Peace House explain its mission and provide insight on what families currently residing at Peace House experience. Overall, this has been a great service-learning project, not only for COM180 studying advanced film and audio techniques by creating an introductive video but also for Peace House by volunteering and supporting their valuable cause.

To contribute to Peace House and/or watch COM180’s new video, please visit the Buffalo Peace House website for more information.


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