ST. LOUIS – A new documentary explores the growth of the Bosnian community in St. Louis.
Joseph Puelo’s film “A New Home” is now available to stream on Amazon Prime. The documentary introduces viewers to St. Louis’ Bosnian community and examines how thousands of Bosnian War refugees fled and ended up in the Midwest decades ago.
According to national nonprofit Global Gates, St. Louis and Chicago have the two largest U.S. Bosnian populations, both home to between 50,000-70,000 people of Bosnian descent. The nonprofit adds that St. Louis is the only U.S. city with a substantial active ministry for Bosnian residents.
Deed News, a digital publication covering film festivals, explains “When Bosnians fled their homes to escape the war in 1992, many ended up in St. Louis, largely because of its affordable housing and available jobs. The new arrivals began assimilating, starting their own businesses and transforming a once dilapidated South City neighborhood in the shadow of the Bevo Mill into a thriving ‘Little Bosnia.'”
“A New Home” highlights how Bosnian refugees overcame challenges as they settled into St. Louis and embraced a new life. Planning for the film began as early as spring 2021. The film debuted this past summer as part of the St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase and took home honors for Best Documentary and Best Sound (Documentary).
“This documentary was a complete labor of love,” said Puleo via Deed News. “To be trusted with telling the harrowing and triumphant story of the Bosnians in St. Louis was not a responsibility that I took lightly and their courageous resolve inspired me to give this film all I could give. The audience response so far has been overwhelmingly positive and we cannot wait for more people to get the opportunity to see A New Home through Amazon’s portal.”
“A New Home is a fascinating documentary that I highly recommend,” said former St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay, who is also featured in the film, via Deed News. “I hope everyone in the St. Louis area gets a chance to watch and not only be entertained but learn about their Bosnian neighbors’ struggle for safety and freedom and the lasting impact they have had on our entire region.”
For more updates on the film and how to watch it, click here.