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Survival By Zipcode

Photo: Manjula Varghese

In this film and panel discussion program, we grapple with the questions of why communities of color are most impacted by environmental hazards and public health crises, and how to make sure disaster responses going forward centers those who are impacted the most. In exploring racial disparities in deaths during the 1995 Chicago heat wave, Judith Helfand’s film Cooked: Survival by Zip Code serves as a reminder that COVID-19’s disproportionate impact on communities of color was preordained. Manjula Varghese’s short film Before It Was Them, Now It’s Us conveys stories of these impacts as experienced by San Francisco’s Bayview community. Join us as we discuss community-based solutions around climate and public health in the context of urban planning and equity.


  • Watch the two films anytime during the festival week with your Rental Pass
  • Join our YouTube Livestream for the panel discussion, audience questions welcome. No registration necessary


CM Credits: 1
Curation by Fay Darmawi and Jamon Franklin


Pancho Arguelles Executive Director of Living Hope Wheelchair Association

Judith-HelfandJudith Helfand Director, Cooked: Survival By Zipcode

Headshot of Berta Hernandez, a Mexican woman with short gray hair wearing glassesBerta Hernández Director of Family Services, Instituto Familiar de la Raza

Anthony Iton, M.D., J.D., MPH Senior VP Healthy Communities, The California Endowment

Katherine SchaffKatherine Schaff (Moderator) Health Equity Coordinator, Berkeley Media Studies Group

Jamon FranklinJamon Franklin Guest Curator

In this program

two people wearing face masks embrace

Before It Was Them, Now It’s Us

Directed by Gabrielle Lurie, Manjula Varghese

The Bayview community reflects on how the pandemic has impacted their lives.

The words "COOKED, SURVIVAL BY ZIP CODE" pasted on top of a city map of Chicago.

COOKED: Survival by Zipcode

Directed by Judith Helfand

Cooked: Survival by Zip Code tells the story of the tragic 1995 Chicago heatwave, the most traumatic in U.S….

Dates & Times