By Will Espero

Gobi Children’s Song is a short documentary from the United States by director Sas Carey who has dedicated her work towards the support and preservation of traditional Mongolian culture. The film highlights a nomadic family in the vast Gobi Desert and shares their daily chores and work in a barren environment with sheep, goats, and camels. It’s a family affair as children and adults live and thrive like their ancestors of the past. The butchering and cleaning of a goat showcases the importance of passing down knowledge and customs from one generation to another. Modern amenities such as television, cell phones, and motorcycles depict a changing world where people transition and adapt but still hold their traditions and beliefs.

Director Sas Carey

Sas Carey is an American film director, author, teacher, holistic nurse, and spiritual healer. She has written the book Reindeer Herders in My Heart: Stories of Healing Journeys in Mongolia, directed and produced four feature films on Mongolian culture, and founded the non-profit Nomadicare to support and preserve traditional Mongolian nomadic culture through healthcare, films, and stories.

In addition, Carey has produced a number of short films about the Dukha herders. Her first three feature films have been shown at the Rubin Museum of Art, New York. Gobi Women’s Song was accepted at Green Mountain Film Festival, Vermont International Film Festival, and the Woodstock Film Festival. 

The movies Ceremony and Migration have been viewed on Vermont Public Broadcasting Service. 

In 2016 Migration won the Earth’s Choice Award at the Earth Day Film Festival, San Francisco. It also received the Honorable Mention award from the International Film Awards Berlin (2016). The Pärnu (Estonia) International Documentary Film Festival granted Migration The Best Scientific Audiovisual Recording (2016).

With Nomadicare, Sas Carey provides educational talks, screenings, and seminars in the United States and internationally to further awareness of the Mongolian culture. She has presented at the Explorer’s Club in New York, The Rubin Museum of Art, the Mongolian Embassy in Washington D.C, the Smithsonian Institute, the American Center for Mongolian Studies in Ulaanbaatar, and numerous theaters, film festivals, libraries, colleges, and universities.

After teaching second grade and working as a professional clay sculptor, Carey became a Registered Nurse and started a private practice in holistic nursing. In 1990, her prevention program, Alternatives for Teens, received one of ten Exemplary Prevention Programs Awards given nationally from the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

As founder and director of the non-profit organization Nomadicare, my mission is to support and preserve Mongolia’a traditional nomadic culture through health care, written stories and documentaries. This story is especially precious to me because I first met Naraa, the girl in the long-sleeved pink shirt, when she was eighteen months old. She had been a victim of burns so severe that without intervention, she would never have walked right. Our program brought her, her mother, and a translator to Shriners Hospital Boston four times for burn care. So, seeing her run and tackle a sheep in Gobi Children’s Song is touching to me every time I see it.

Sas Carey

Gobi Children’s Song is an Official Selection at the 2022 edition of the Global Nonviolent Film Festival, and it can be watched from September 29 to October 10 on globalnonviolentfilmfestival.comD!