Girl Rising Film Showing in the Philippines
Sometime in 2013, I was walking in the souks of Marrakesh when a photograph caught my attention: a 15 year old girl was shot by the Taliban because she is fighting for girls to go to school in Pakistan. 15 years old. Shot by a man. A child. Versus a man. For me, it seemed impossible. Why would you shoot a child who wants to go to school? The face of the girl who survived resonates so much power and made me realise the reality of young girls in Pakistan. She entered me.
From that day on, I told myself, “I have to go to Pakistan.” I don’t know how or why, but I know I have to go.
But Pakistan wasn’t ideal in this age of terrorism. I wasn’t scared to go but I was concerned about how my family will feel. They will worry about me. For the first time in my life, the reckless person that I am became sensitive and unselfish.
I still promised the young girls of Pakistan that they will be heard. I speak not for myself, but for those who don’t have a voice. Those who have fought for their rights. I have volunteered in Africa and Latin America helping educate girls around the world. In addition, I have asked my fellow female travellers to help me in encouraging women all over the world to travel. The series is called “Dear Girls of the World” and you can read all our entries here.
Before I leave for my next adventure, I would like to spread the word about my current endeavour: Girls’ right toEducation by Girl Rising. Around the world, millions of girls face barriers to education that boys do not. And yet, when you educate a girl, you can break cycles of poverty in just one generation.
I have held a hand of an old woman who is dying of hunger in La Rinconada; one of my co-volunteers in a rural area in Zanzibar was thrown acid on her face while were having dinner during Ramadan; my ultimate dream is to be a teacher in Karachi or Swat District; but I have yet to experience empowering girls in my country. I think this is the right time.
I would like to invite you (or if you are representing an organisation) to help me spread the word. Girl Rising, a groundbreaking film that has already been seen by millions is a movement for girls’ education that I am proud to support. It is supporting thousands of International Day of a Girl all over the world. Your participation will send a message: investing in girls is not just right; it is smart.
I am not only reaching out to girls and women because women’s rights is an issue of men, too. As Emma Watson said, ‘it is time that we all see gender as a spectrum instead of two sets of opposing ideals. We should stop defining each other by what we are not, and start defining ourselves by who we are. I want men to understand this issue so that their sisters, daughters and mothers can be free from prejudice.’
If you haven’t seen the trailer of the film, please take a few minutes to watch it below:
CALL TO ACTION
I am asking teachers, heads of any organisations, advocates to reach out and help me spread the word about girls’ education. If you are interested to show Girl Rising in your community in the Philippines, please send me an e-mail at trishavelarmino[at]gmail[dot]com. Please take note that this film is not available in cinemas/online.
“I will read, I will study, I will learn. If you try to stop me, I will just try harder. If you try to stop me, there will be other girls who will rise above and take my place.”
© Cover Photo photographed by Seth Carnill