We just watched the movie «Girl Rising», a movie about the life experiences from girls all around the world. The movie underline gender equality and quality education, which are important topics to focus on. Many known stars, such as Selena Gomez, Anne Hathaway and Priyanka Chopra narrate of the different stories told in the movie. Girl Rising is also a global campaign for girls’ education and empowerment, and this movie is part of the campaign to increase awareness of the importance of the education and gender equality all over the world.
After watching the movie, I realized that these different stories, are just some of the few stories around the world carrying the same message. There are many other untold stories that we have not yet heard about, but that are quite like these. One of the girls, Suma from Nepal, made the biggest impression out of all the girls from the movie. She became a kamlari, and ended up in bonded slavery at the age of six because she was born a girl. She also spent five years living as a kamlari in three different households, where she experienced things a girl at such a young age should not have to go through. Those memories are still haunting her, and she will never forget that. Growing up in an unhealthy household derived of your childhood because your parents could not afford to send you to school, is not something we want to experience. It could cause traumatic sideeffects which could haunt you for the rest of your life.
The catchphrase of the campaign is “One girl with courage is a revolution”, a phrase I totally agree with. As for Suma ‘s story, her last master ever released her from the kamlari bond they had, so she finally received the education she had been longing for. She was lucky because she met a good teacher at the last house she was a kamlari at. She later met a teacher that had night lectures for other kamlaris like her, and who fought for Suma to become a free person again. Later, when Suma became older, like the teacher did, she and many other girls fought for the right of other young girls living as kamlaris. Suma’s story ended with the narrator saying; “I’ve seen where change comes from, when it comes, it is like a song you cannot hold back. Suddenly there is a breath moving through you, and you are singing! And others pick up the tune and start singing too. And a sweet melody goes out into the world and touches the heart of one person, then another, and another.” These words describe exactly what the catchphrase is trying to tell us, that if one of us dares to take a chance, many others will follow, so you alone, do not have to make the big change, because the change is within us all.
We all know that stories like these from the movie, “Girl Rising”are told everywhere. However these in particular are neither pure journalism, nor fiction. The filmmakers was really creative directing the movie because it really effected my thoughts about these matters. Because the way I see it, just because we talk about it all the time, doesn’t mean it is not happening. I felt like it was aiming at me, making me feel guilty for living the life I am living, complaining about going to school, while others don’t even get the opportunities to do so, and are suffering.
Though I can relate to the lives of the girls through the storytelling, I \felt more empathy rather than sympathy for them. That is because even though I`ve spent most of my lifetime until now in Norway, an amazing country that offers a lot of opportunities for both genders and offer a free education for all, I once lived in a poor part of South-East Asia, a place where you could be discriminated against just because you are a girl. It doesn’t have to do with how smart or intelligent you are, it could basically be just because you are a female, a girl, a woman, some that is considered less important than the opposite gender. Yet like those girls, I didn’t consider myself as a victim, because I wasn’t the one at fault, it was everyone else. Living in difficult circumstances, doesn’t have to mean that your life is over. It could be that you`re on the very edge of the cliff, but someone could help you pick up again or more importantly, you could raise yourself up again.
People like you and I, we need to get a grip of ourselves. We need to reach out and help those in need. We know that there are inequalities in this world. We know girls are treated and viewed differently. We have all heard about it, I know we all have witnessed it, because this is a topic that can be spoken and be seen everywhere. We can make a change, so girls like Suma doesn’t have to go through something like that. Girls shouldn’t have to suffer because they were born as girls. We need gender equality by trying to change this world we live in. We have the power to change people’s minds by speaking out, by voicing our opinions. We can make a change. I can make a change. And so, can you!