Zaatari Djinn

Catherine van Campen

In the middle of the desert, a new city has arisen under the scorching sun: refugee camp Zaatari. Eighty per cent of the inhabitants is still a child. From the perspective of four young residents, we see what it is like to grow up here – a place with limited resources or any chance of improvement, but with room for dreams.

In Jordan, near the border with Syria, lies the Zaatari refugee camp. Over the past few years, this place has grown into a veritable city of 80,000 residents. It is not a city as we know it: there are no houses, only prefab dwellings and there are sand tracks instead of roads.

Dutch filmmaker Catherine van Campen follows four children, who each deal with circumstances inside the camp in their own way. Dreamy Maryam (15) is busy with football and theatre and Fatma (12) makes friends with a rooster. Poor Ferras (10) is in worse condition: he needs to work for a living and has trouble leaving his memories of war behind. And then there is wealthy Hammoudi (8), who can buy anything he wants. To him, the camp is a paradise.

In spite of the limited resources, the children make something of their lives. A ball of paper becomes a football and two insects turn into a zoo. Zaatari may be a place without history or future, but it is also a home.

The screening of Zaatari Djin om Sunday 26 March at Nutshuis starts at 19.30 hrs in stead of 19.00 hrs.


Catherine van Campen
Boudewijn Koole, Iris Lammertsma
Country of production
Netherlands, The
90 minutes
Spoken language
Production company
Dutch distributor
Cinema Delicatessen