Girls rise in Majuro

US Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission Jeremiah Knight speaks to the 150 middle and high school girls, along with government VIPs, attending the recent showing of the film, Girl Rising, at the ICC in Majuro. Photo: Wilmer Joel.

WILMER JOEL

The International Conference Center (ICC) was glimmering late last month with vibrant orange color worn by over 150 participants, mostly female students grade seven to 12 from Laura High School, Marshall Islands High School, Life Skills Academy, Assumption High, Delap Seventh Day Adventist, Laura Middle School, and Majuro Deaf Center to witness a showing of a film presentation “Girl Rising.”

The movie tells the stories of nine girls from nine countries: Sierra Leone, Haiti, Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Peru, Egypt, Nepal, India and Cambodia. Each girl had her story written by a writer from her country and voiced by renowned actors. Their stories reflect their struggles to overcome societal or cultural barriers.

The film is a 2013 documentary film produced by Kayce Freed, Tom Yellin and Holly Gordon at The Documentary Group, in partnership with Paul G. Allen and Jody Allen of Vulcan Productions.

This event was organized by the United States Embassy, Women United Together Marshall Islands (WUTMI), and RMI Public School System.

“When we talk about celebrating women’s history month every woman was a girl,” said US Deputy Chief of Mission Jeremiah Knight. “We need women, we need girls that are courageous and inspirational to help us guys to do our job.”

“Orange the World, end violence against women and girls,” read WUTMI Executive Director Daisy Alik-Momotaro from the women’s history theme following Knight’s remarks.

“We need to work together so that this injustice will end,” said Kathryn Relang, Country Focal Officer for Pacific Community who was the keynote speaker. Alongside sign language translator Jelina Capelle, Relang reiterated the importance of women.

“Without women living on Earth, people wouldn’t have existed.”

“Do you know your worth?” she asked the girls in attendance. “We are here because we are building a future for tomorrow, you’re tomorrow so that when you grow up you have a tomorrow where you can build a tomorrow for other young people.”

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