In January, 2020, Soren Dickens, 23, traveled to India to partake in an international effort to provide polio vaccinations to children. Along with Rotarians from around the country, the goal was to immunize 100 million children over a five day period.
“I didn’t set out to make a documentary,” Soren Dickens says, “I didn’t even bring a camera. But I met another Rotarian who brought an extra camcorder, and after seeing everything I was seeing, I couldn’t resist.”
After two weeks, Soren returned home to San Luis Obispo and reunited with his brother, Eriksen, 25. The two brothers own and operate Platinum Peek Productions, a digital storytelling agency that produces video content for business and brands.
“Soren couldn’t wait to show me all the footage he’d taken,” Eriksen says. “He was adamant we had to put something together. When I sat down and started going through the footage, I was shook.”
Soren had traveled to some of the most impoverished villages in India. He had seen up close and personal the effects of India’s caste system and could hardly believe the sights and smells.
“I expected to be exposed to poverty, sure,” Soren says. “But the level of poverty and the dire conditions the people lived in was truly sobering.”
Upon arriving back home, Eriksen and Soren Dickens went to work editing the footage. Four months later, they finished their 15 minute documentary of which they titled, Two Magic Drops.
“Once we released the film, we were thrilled with the reaction we got,” Eriksen says. “We felt like we really created something special here.”
Once Rotary groups from around the country began to catch wind of the film, they requested that the brothers present the film to their group. For those that may be unaware, Rotary is an international service consisting of over 1 million business and professional leaders that provide humanitarian services.
Some of the bigger Rotary clubs that reached out were out of Hollywood, Fremont, Modesto, San Jose, San Luis Obispo, and Sunnyville. Clubs wanted to hear about the trip itself, the takeaways, and of course, the actual film, which was always presented and followed by a Q&A.
“It was an honor. Not only did it give us a platform to share our work, it allowed us to spread a very important message,” Soren says. “Not many people know that polio still exists, and some Rotarians weren’t even aware that eradicating polio was one of Rotary’s primary goals.”
On October 24th, World Polio Day, Eriksen and Soren had the opportunity to sit on a panel and answer questions through the San Luis Obispo Rotary Club. The club had seen the film and were so amazed, they wanted the brothers to make an appearance.
“It was such a cool experience,” Eriksen says. “We got to share the film and then present ideas from a millennial’s perspective on how to spread awareness to younger generations who aren’t aware of the issue.”
Aside from the positive feedback from friends, family, fans, and Rotary groups, the film was also selected to 8 international film festivals and won awards at 3. One of those awards was for Best Documentary, a huge feat for the young, independent filmmakers.
The film is currently available for purchase on Amazon with all proceeds going to Rotary International to help combat polio.