by Rachel Holtzman
To raise awareness about the lack of girls’ equal access to education and opportunity in developing countries, the Girls Learn International Club will host a select screening of the documentary Girl Rising at the Cranford Theatre Feb. 6. According to girlrising.com, the film follows the stories of nine girls around the world whose struggle to receive equal education impacts their health and socioeconomic status.
“[The girls in this film] are very driven and determined,” said sophomore GLI member Isabella Gelfand. “They remain strong no matter what obstacles they must face. We root for them because they deserve to succeed.”
The girls in the film were profiled by writers from their own countries. Since the girls on camera typically do not speak English, actresses known for their support of women’s rights, such as Chloe Grace Moretz, tell the stories via voiceovers, according to girlrising.com.
Junior club President Melanie Nettler said that the film emphasizes the club’s values and goals as an organization. “This film is so relatable...because it includes all the obstacles that girls sometimes have to tackle in order to go to school. By sending the money we raise to [the Abdullah bin Omar School in Afghanistan], we’re helping to eliminate these obstacles.”
“Learning about the 10 young women featured in this film….has had quite an effect on the members of our club, more so than just through the activities we participate in at our meetings,” said Club Adviser Ms. Sandra McCarthy. “Having a screening close to home to raise awareness became our mission.”
She added, “The money we raise through this screening will help to ensure that the girls and young women that attend that school continue to have the chance to do so.”
The event, which begins at 7:30 p.m., still has tickets available in advance. Tickets will be available as space allows or until Feb. 5.
Gelfand said that club members hope that after people see the film, they will learn more about “important and pressing international issues like child marriage, human trafficking and poverty…. Even though the issues highlighted in the film may not influence us on a daily basis, they matter and are affecting millions of people just like us.”