Another Article for our regular SPARK JOURNAL. Here is what Anna, one of our Interns from Germany thought of girls rising and how it changed her perspective on the topic. Living in Germany she was aware of all these things happening but the visualization of the 9 stories brought the topic closer on an emotional level.


Girl rising – educating girls, change the world

‘Educating girls can break cycles of poverty in just one generation, yet millions of girls aren’t in school. ‘Did you know, that according to UNESCO, 66 million girls are out of school globally? And that a child born to a literate mother is 50% more likely to survive past the age of 5? Well neither did I.

Girl rising is a documentary telling the story of 9 girls, all around the world who were born into challenging circumstances. It showcases the traumatizing experiences each of these girls had to endure and how they managed to turn life-changing struggles into something bringing them forward, simply by gaining access to education. When it comes to education, girls all over the world still face barriers boys do not. Raising awareness and changing the view of how women should be treated around the world is one of the main messages this movie tries to convey.
Educated women stand up for their rights and are more likely to educate their own children thus breaking the vicious cycle of non-education they were trapped in for generations.
Slavery, rape, child marriage and missing access to education are just a few examples of what these girls went through.

I found the documentary to be informing while at the same time shocking. In my opinion, hearing about reality and seeing real life stories makes a big difference.

Coming from Germany, I was aware of all these things taking place around the world, but Girl rising managed somehow to show me the urgency and seriousness about facing the reality and change the existing.

My personal favorite was Ruksana, a young girl living on the streets of Kolkotta, India. Her story is one of a girl growing up in a poor family nonetheless her parents are dedicated to offer her and her sisters’ proper education. Her part in the movie features her love to the arts, how the lack of her ability to use art affects her school work, the dangerous live of girls in India and the tragedy of how her family loses their housing.

Through all of that, her loving family but especially her passion for arts keep her strong and help her to get through.

I think Ruksana is my favorite girl because I could relate the most with the overall experiences I’ve made in the Philippines so far. The living conditions reminded me of the Slums I pass by every morning I go to work and all the children playing there. Also my recent work with Spark in the Event “Connecting Communities through Art” proofed the ability of art to help overcome traumas, give positive influence in live and power to keep on going even in the most desperate situation.


The overall message the movie conveyed to me, is that every girl has the same equal right of education that boys have and that even if the situation seems hopeless, with a strong will a girl can achieve anything. There are always going to be obstacles in live, but isn’t life about how you manage to overcome these obstacles and your own personal development? One of the most important messages for me in this movie was a short sentence that Ruksana said:” That’s when I learned to never give up.” Together we can achieve a world where education is not differentiated between girls and boys but simply is what it is, education!


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Posted by:sparkphilippines

SPARK or Samahan ng mga Pilipina para sa Reporma at Kaunlaran is a SEC-registered non-profit organization composed of empowered women and women champions committed to the development of women and women’s organizations as full partners in national development.

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