Image: Detail of 1/2-003634-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. /records/23166346


They share their harrowing journey through Siberia, Central Asia and Persia, a warm welcome in New Zealand, and the life they made here.

A question and answer session with the film's producer, Alina Suchanski, follows.

Alina is also the author of Alone, an account of the life of one of the Pahiatua children, Tony Leparowski – her stepfather. She talks about researching individuals' stories in their historical context and uncovering the universal themes of the human spirit's triumph and lessons in thriving under the most trying of circumstances.

Invited by Rt Hon Peter Fraser to enjoy a safe haven here during World War II, 75 years ago on 31 October, over 800 Polish refugees, most of them orphaned children, sailed into Wellington Harbour on the USS General Randall. They settled in the Polish Children's Camp in Pahiatua.

When at the end of World War II Poland was placed under Stalin's communist rule, most of the children accepted the offer to become New Zealand citizens. The event's focus is on the stories of those children who settled in Christchurch and the South Island.

Booking is required.