In Ethiopia with Gabriella Ghermandi, against female genital mutilation and child marriage. Follow the link for the theatre show of the Italo-Ethiopian artist.
The idea of the travelling cinema in Ethiopia was born out of the encounter with Gabriella Ghermandi a writer and actress of Italian and Ethiopian origin; the project aimed to speak about female genital mutilation and child marriage.
In the world there are one hundred and thirty million women and young girls that have been subjected to barbaric genital mutilations; there are also three million women and children that every year are at risk of suffering from such acts, according to the figures estimated by the World Health Organisation. In Ethiopia around 80% of women aged between 15 and 49 have been subjected to genital mutilation; another tragic side of women’s life is the tradition of child marriage. At the young age of nine or ten women are forced into marriages; this practice contributes to a high incidence of obstetric fistula, which can lead women to be abandoned by their husbands and to be ostracised by the community. The Fistula Foundation Hospital in Addis Ababa reports that in Ethiopia 100,000 women suffer from this condition, with an annual increment of 9,000 cases (which makes it one of the most severe situations in the world).
«One evening – tells Ghermandi – on TV I heard about a group of people that had brought travelling cinema to Mozambique. I imagined them in the villages, observing the eyes of the children that were watching cinema for the first time. Their virgin eyes…
The group’s name is Cinemovel and today we are planning together travelling cinema in villages in Ethiopia; together with films, the project includes a health, social and cultural awareness campaign which will focus on trying to stop the tragedy of female genital mutilation and child marriages.
The silver screen can allow people to dream and hope for a different life. I hope that in this you will join us».
Moolaadé is a film by Ousmane Sembene which we’d like to dub in the main Ethiopian languages; this film is the symbol of this campaign against the violation and mutilation of female bodies. Ousmane Sembene was a great African filmmaker who died in 2007 and we aim to continue in his footsteps; when he was interviewed in Cannes, he said: “This practice (FGM) is common in several African countries and the film will raise controversy. I make militant films and this is my goal. To show this film, we’ll take the film in the countryside villages of Africa and this will aim to make men and women debate with each other, because when women make progress, it’s the whole society to take one step ahead”.
In order to complete this project, we need partners, sponsors and travel companions.