YORDANOS SHIFERAW (Rahil) was born in Asmara, the capital of
between the late 80s and the early 90s. As a child, she spent time in a refugee
camp in Debre
Zeyit, Ethiopia, after her mother died on the long and arduous journey made on
foot. She lived
with her father briefly before he died of an old war injury.
In the years that followed, she was separated from her four sisters and found
displaced. She didn't receive an education and was forced very early into living
an adult life,
working as a shoeshine girl and human parking meter when she was homeless.
Around age of 20, she found two of her sisters working as live-in maids in
Beirut. She too was
employed as a maid until she fled her employer and continued to live and work
illegally in the
Like her character, Shiferaw was arrested as an illegal immigrant during the
shoot, and jailed for
two weeks before being released. Nadine Labaki and Khaled Mouzanar went through
of officially sponsoring her so she could stay legally in Lebanon.
Since the showing of CAPERNAUM at Cannes, she has moved to Paris.