Film on Immigrant Women and Domestic Violence Receives CSWE Virtual Ovation Award


For Immediate Release
Lydell Thomas
Manager, Marketing and Communications


Alexandria, VA, November 25, 2014 – University of Pennsylvania law professor Regina Austin and PennLaw graduates Shikha Bhattacharjee, Tsedey Bogale, and Tarun Sridharan are the recipients of the CSWE 2014 Virtual Ovation Award for their film Between Worlds: Immigrant Women and Domestic Violence, featured at the CSWE 2014 Virtual Film Festival.

The film portrays the challenges faced by immigrant women who have experienced domestic violence, which include cultural and language barriers, economic and legal issues, and isolation that may impede the delivery of services.

Said Austin, director of the Penn Program on Documentaries & the Law, “Winning the Virtual Ovation Award confirms that the goal of the brave women who appear in Between Worlds to assist others grappling with immigration and domestic violence will continue to be achieved.”

The film may be viewed online. DVDs may be ordered at no charge from Austin.

The filmmakers have elected to donate the $500 Virtual Ovation Award prize to the nonprofit Nationalities Service Center, which provides social, educational, and legal services to immigrants and refugees in the Philadelphia area.

Between Worlds: Immigrant Women and Domestic Violence was one of six films selected for CSWE’s second virtual film festival, which featured student-produced films related to social work. The festival is part of CSWE’s ongoing efforts to highlight classroom resources for social work educators. Audience members rated the films.

“We’re pleased to present this award to the PennLaw team,” said Darla Spence Coffey, CSWE president. “Between Worlds underscores the need for culturally competent social work professionals who can assist domestic violence survivors in healing and living lives free from fear.”

CSWE is a nonprofit national association representing more than 2,500 individual members as well as graduate and undergraduate programs of professional social work education. Founded in 1952, this partnership of educational and professional institutions, social welfare agencies, and private citizens is recognized by the Council on Higher Education Accreditation as the sole accrediting agency for social work education in the United States.