During an action-packed weekend in late September, 17 girls used all their creative energies to bring to life digital stories capturing their thoughts and lived experiences on issues related to bullying, gender, discrimination, empowerment, peace and education.
These digital story-tellers are part of a Fiji Women’s Rights Movement’s empowerment project called GIRLS. Grow-Inspire-Relate-Lead-Succeed is a critical part of the FWRM’s Young Women in Leadership Programme and is one of Fiji’s leading feminist-based gender equality projects for 10-12 year girls.
In the lead up to the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign this year, FWRM, with support from the United National Development Programme with funding from the European Union, the International Women’s Development Agency and technical assistance from Pacific Women, worked with the girls to storyboard ideas, script and produce the stories using digital technology. Each story is about two minutes long and were made using the iMovie application on iPads.
Many of the girls were used to taking videos and photographs but none had ever created a story with voiceovers. They found the whole experience stimulating:
Rosene, who put together a story using peace as the central theme said: “The thing I liked about the two-day training is when I had to look for photos to fit my story and also take videos of the environment. I learnt how to put the photos and videos on iMovie and make a digital story myself.”
Akansha’s story was on the importance of empowering girls: “I liked everything about the training. It was exciting and full of new things to learn. It’s a good experience for every girl – to learn how to make digital stories. I liked editing the photos as well and seeing what fit with my story.”
Barbara’s story highlighted the different expectations of girls and boys in her family: “I loved making my own video and sharing my own story. I leant a lot from the trainers.”
The digital stories will be launched during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign. Links will be made available via FWRM’s Facebook page, as well as in the next issue of Pacific Women’s e-newsletter.