Experiencing Interruptions?


Building bridges between indigenous people and Latinos has been the life work of Juan Rodriguez. His journey started in the Dominican Republic, and has taken him to deepest parts of Panama and Costa Rica for 20 years. Following His calling has not been easy, but Juan's tireless dedication to the work has inspired thousands of people to action.

Juan and his team have brought education, clean water, medicine, agriculture, and leadership training to the remote jungles and mountains of Latin America. Over the years Juan has developed a proven strategy for lifting these villages from the depths of disease and poverty to a thriving and health-sustaining community.

The living conditions are poor and often characterized by disease and malnutrition. The indigenous people cannot read or write. They often have no clothes. Some practice no religion or a sort of quasi-religion, which allows the leader or “Chief” to rape the young girls at will. Juan works to first gain their trust and often overcome resistance from the Chief and leaders who do not want to change. They are too ignorant to know that what they are doing is wrong and they do not understand basic hygiene and health, the spreading of germs or even how to grow food. It is hard to imagine in today’s world with modern technology people can live in such a place of isolation and deprivation. But this is the case with these villages. It is a lifetime of work, but building bridges that last for generations is work worth doing.

  • Brian Hansen
  • Jim Chamberlin
  • Dan Crosley
  • Juan Rodriguez
  • Phil Cramer
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Developing Nations, Native Aboriginal Peoples, Poverty
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 30 minutes 43 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 31, 2017
  • Production Budget:
    35,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    Costa Rica, Panama
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Brian Hansen

Brian Hansen has been producing videos from the moment he first got his hands on a video camera in college during the late 90’s. It’s safe to say that he was hooked on video from the beginning. The power of motion and sound together is an alluring medium that Brian cannot escape.

Brian has covered a vast array of topics with video. Some topics he’s explored include marching band, auto racing, faith testimonials, fundraising, sports, international missions, manufacturing, and building trades. One of his favorite challenges is to sink his teeth into a new topic and tell a story he didn’t even know existed!

Early in his career, Brian worked for various agencies and non-profits while honing his skills and perfecting his craft. Currently he operates a production company (Hansen Multimedia) in the Indianapolis area. He has built a reputation for being a crafty storyteller that can make even the mundane seem interesting. Short-form work was how Brian learned the craft, and long-form work is where he has really stretched himself to new and exciting creative heights.

His transition into making documentary features was a natural progression. And, the more documentaries he produces the more he realizes just how much fun it is to work on long-form projects. There’s something about looking at the bin of 25 interviews, and 10 hours of B-Roll that gets him going. Before you know it, rough cuts emerge and the story forms. Brian knows there is magic in those interviews, and will find it every time.

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Director Statement

Puente means "bridge" in English. This film's primary message is about building bridges between people groups. It's about the powerful life change that can be found when we step outside of ourselves and connect with people who are different from us.

This film has been a personal passion project for me that goes back 10 years. When I first visited Panama and went to these remote villages in 2007 I knew I would be back to produce a proper documentary in the future. We've attempted to produce this feature on more than one occasion and it fell thru due to logistics and timing. In early 2016 it was looking like it would happen, and it did!