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8 ways African countries are using data to change lives
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TECHNOLOGY

8 ways African countries are using data to change lives

30 June 2017 4:51PM UTC | By: GUEST BLOGGER

 
   

By Jennifer Oldfield, Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data

What data is and how data could and should be used to change the world is a debate that’s been going since the beginning of data collection.

In its simplest form, data is numbers. These numbers then get collected and analysed (for trends, patterns, anomalies, outliers etc.) and turned into information. It’s this information which then informs us how best to proceed.

When people within the international development talk about the “data revolution”, and get excited by its potential to change the world, it can sometimes feel slightly beyond reach.

Here, we’ve decided to explore 8 real life examples of why #datamatters, and how it is being used across Africa to change lives:

1. NASA is helping Kenya build a secure future for farmers and the younger generation.

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Working with Kenya’s Ministry of Agriculture, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) will provide real-time information on crop types, agricultural insurance, and weather. The Kenya government is leading this effort to boost the productivity of small farmers.

2.  Rebuilding post-conflict countries using data.

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Student sprayers keeping medics safe from Ebola in Makeni, Sierra Leone. (Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Sierra Leone has weathered the Ebola crises and the collapse of its main mining industry (iron ore), but has doubled down on efforts to develop and implement data-led national development plans to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Projects include an initiative to open up fiscal and economic data. Despite after-effects of conflict, data can help these nations accelerate recovery and contribute to Africa’s collective future. 

3. Securing farmers’ futures while building food resilience and security.

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(Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Good data can secure a farmer’s future. In collaboration with NASA and the Initiative Prospective Agricole et Rurale (IPAR) the Government of Senegal will learn about farming trends through producer’s associations and then feed back information to them on changing seasons, weather and optimal crops to strengthen food security. 

4. ID cards can help improve access to education and health care to millions.

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The ID card system will help the government plan for and enrol more children in school at age 6. (Photo credit: World Bank).

Ghana will introduce a national ID card to address the country’s problem with unregistered births. Using ID cards to gather data will improve health services throughout a child’s early years, and will significantly improve a child’s chances in adult life. Better lives start with better childhoods.

 5. Registering new births to provide access to healthcare.

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Globally, an estimated 230 million children under five are not registered. (Photo credit: Plan International).

It is estimated that millions of births are unregistered, severely limiting life chances. Kenya is partnering with private sector partners such as Unilever, Royal Philips, and Safaricom to improve data collection and connectivity in rural counties. Together they will improve primary health care, and share their learnings with African nations to better the lives of Africa’s young.

6. African nations are building sophisticated data systems to improve public policy.

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Taking the Global Goals to Dodoma. (Photo credit: UN).

In Tanzania, the government is using international standards established at global forums such as the PARIS21 consortium, to improve availability, quality, and accessibility of data to the country. This collaborative effort will apply global and regional indicators helping national policy to address the most serious challenges, including population growth and climate change. 

7. Setting up data labs to provide home-grown talent.

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Data science can be used for development and humanitarian action. (Photo credit: UN Global Pulse).

There is a worldwide shortage of data scientists while data-wrangling capacity is in short supply. A network of data labs is emerging where global institutions, national experts, and researchers are collaborating to support African countries. Kenya’s Strathmore University, the University of Rwanda, UNECA plus the UK’s Office of National Statistics and Department for International Development (DFID) are working together to improve the quality, strengthen leadership and share the benefits of data led development.    

8. Using telco data to track internal migration.

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Anonymised data from users mobiles’ pinging local towers can be used to see how people flow through a country. Ghana is exploring use of this technique to map and plan for internal economic migration and access to social services.

The hard work starts NOW.

With political commitments secured across Africa, the UN Foundation’s “Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data,” which co-ordinates initiatives for African progress, is gathering in Nairobi to host “Data for Development in Africa” on June 29 and 30. Key partners from national governments to the private sector will present their first steps to achieving tangible date-led development projects. The Partnership’s Executive Director, Dr. Claire Melamed, believes “African countries are leading by example, mainstreaming innovations that will benefit millions of people across the continent.”

Information on the conference and its outcomes can be found at data4sdgs.org.

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30 June 2017 4:51PM UTC

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Music Generation Wicklow have announced registration dates for programmes happening in the area:

More info here: http://www.musicgenerationwicklow.ie/

...and here: http://www.musicgeneration.ie/blog/article/what-back-to-school-blues-make-music-this-september-with-music-generation/

Tuesday 19th Sept ‘17 
Blessington Further Education Centre 
3 - 5pm Blessington Music Hub 
- Small Group Lessons
(7-12’s) Keyboard
Guitar
Traditional Flute
Singing 

Tuesday 26th Sept ’17
Scoil Chonglais, Baltinglass
4 - 6pm Baltinglass Music Hub
- Small Group Lessons
(13 – 18’s)
Guitar
Piano

Thursday 28th Sept ‘17 
Scoil Nioclais Naofa, Dunlavin 
3 - 5pm Dunlavin Strings
- Small Group Lessons
(7-12’s & 13–18’s)
Violin

Friday 29th Sept ‘17
Blessington Further Education Centre
5 – 7pm  Blessington Music Hub 
- Small Group Lessons
(13 – 18’s) Guitar
Keyboard
Drums
Jamming Group

Friday 29th Sept ‘17
Blessington Further Education Centre
6 – 8 pm Traditional Irish Music Groups
Junior Group (7 -10’s
Intermediate Group (10 – 13’s)
Senior Group (13 – 18’s)

More info here: http://www.musicgenerationwicklow.ie/

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People who want to learn about and take action on the world’s biggest challenges. Extreme poverty ends with you.

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SEPT. 12, 2017

How Pharrell Williams Is Fighting for the Future and Making the World a Better Place

“You should know that happiness is your birthright.”

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“I’m staring at the future right now. Hello to the future.” 

That’s how Pharrell Williams — musician, philanthropist, Global Citizen, and winner of 10 Grammy awards — addressed a crowd of 1,000 young people at the United Nations during a special ceremony for climate action on the 2015 “International Day of Happiness.” 

Pharrell, of course, is uniquely positioned to talk about happiness. 

His hit song, “Happy,” topped the charts in 22 countries around the world, and became the soundtrack for the movie “Despicable Me 2.” It’s been used in commercials for cars, headphones, and even became a “protest anthem” in countries like Ukraine, Tunisia, Moscow, and the Philippines. 

Read More:  Here's Who Is Playing Global Citizen Festival 2017 in New York City

“You should know that happiness is your birthright,” he told the crowd at the UN. “You have access to that as long as you’re breathing.” 

Pharrell knows happiness because he lives it, and because he finds it in music, he said. 

PW Promo Image.jpg

And for the past decade, Pharrell has done everything in his capacity to bring happiness to as many people as he can — whether that’s through fighting for the planet, encouraging political engagement, promoting educational empowerment, or championing women’s rights. 

Pharrell has used his influence as a musician to become a super activist, and on September 23, he will be bringing his joy, his passion, and his compassion to the Global Citizen Festival in Central Park. You can take action to earn tickets to the festival here .

 

Take Action: Call Now

 
 
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In partnership with: CHIME FOR CHANGE and HP Inc.

 

The Past - The Producer 

Pharrell has been called “ageless” on account of his youthful complexion and timeless style, and has even been compared to a vampire, but contrary to popular belief, the musician did have a human childhood. 

He was born in 1973, and grew up in Virginia Beach, Virginia, as the eldest of three brothers. 

Pharrell was born with synesthesia, according to GQ, which means he sees colors when he hears sounds. 

“When he thinks about his childhood it comes back to him burgundy and baby blue, in strings of numbers and letters,” GQ’s Zach Baron wrote in a profile

AP_17113325348516_Pharrell_Williams_Photo by Richard Shotwell Invision AP.jpgImage: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

His was a musical childhood, inspired by the beats of A Tribe Called Quest and Timbaland. But it also had its challenges. 

“I lived in Normalville USA and I didn't look like the average kid,” the artist said of his youth. 

Read More:  The Lumineers Don’t Like to Preach — Their Advocacy Speaks For Itself

He found an outlet making beats and producing songs with Chad Hugo, a Filipino whose father was in the Navy. Together they formed The Neptunes, and later N.E.R.D., and would go on to produce music for the likes of Jay-Z, Shakira, and Usher. 

Pharrell produced his first solo album, “In My Mind” in 2006. The album, which included guest performances from Gwen Stefani, Snoop Dogg, and Kanye West, brought together pop, funk, hip-hop, and soul. It debuted at number three on the US Billboard 200 — selling over 100,000 copies in the first week. 

He wouldn’t release another album until 2014. In that time he scored the blockbuster film, “Despicable Me,” collaborated with Madonna, and went on tour with Gorillaz — to name just a few things.  

The Present - The Activist 

As he’s aged — at least numerically, if not physically — Pharrell’s music and lifestyle have become entwined with his activism and charity work. 

In 2008, Pharrell founded a nonprofit, From One Hand To AnOTHER Inc. (FOHTA), with the mission of promoting a new vision for the US educational system called S.T.E.A.M.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics, and Motivation). 

FOHTA organizes six-week summer camp programs for 1,000 low-income students across six states — Virginia, Florida, Arizona, California, Missouri, and New York — with a focus on learning through and with technology. 

Read More:  9 Inspiring Quotes From Shakira, Pharrell, Trudeau and More at the Global Citizen Festival Hamburg

In 2011, the artist poured $35 million into the Pharrell Williams Resource Center, which provides a space for underprivileged Virginia Beach students to stay after-school and study. 

Looking like a magical treehouse of sorts, the resource center’s design is intentional — a means of inspiring learning in an unconventional setting. 

“I wanted a building for the center that makes a statement to the world and the kids, something that will stand as a monument of optimism,” Pharrell said. “We want the building to look like something out of the future, so it will inspire the kids in it to aspire to greater things.” 

Not only does Pharrell believe in the power of youth to create change, he also knows that girls and women hold the key to a happier, healthier world. 

Hamburg_Pharrell_RamonHaindlForGlobalCitizen_6.jpgImage: Ramon Haindl for Global Citizen

Pharrell dedicated his second album, “G I R L,” to the women in his life.

“There is no breathing human being on this planet that did not benefit by a woman saying yes twice,” Pharrell said. “Yes to make you, and yes to have you. Point-blank. If women wanted to cripple the economy, all they gotta do is not go to work.”

In 2017, the artist gave a powerful speech at New York University’s graduation about the importance of lifting women up. 

“As you find your ways to serve humanity it gives me great comfort knowing that this generation is the first to understand that we need to lift up our women,” he said. “Imagine the possibilities when women are not held back. The world that you will live in that will be a lot better.” 

He has also spoken eloquently about the need for activism in other walks of life. 

“The days of being an anonymous activist or participant are over. How can we inspire if we are only behind the scenes?" he asked in the NYU speech. 

In a similar vein, Pharrell was active in the 2016 election, urging young people to make their voices heard by getting out and voting

He supported Hillary Clinton’s candidacy, saying: “I wanna see a woman break the presidential glass ceiling on November 8. I wanna see that glass shatter on the floor and I want us all to stomp on it together.”

At a concert in Milan, Italy, in 2015, he spoke out for migrants, dedicating his song, “Freedom,” to the Syrian and North African migrants crossing the Mediterranean Ocean in search of better opportunities in Europe. 

But perhaps his most vocal activism has a lot to do with the present, and everything to do the future: the fight against climate change. 

The Future - The Father 

“I’m passionate about two big issues: climate change, and education and skills for young people,” Pharrell told leaders of the COP 21 in Paris, a summit of the world’s biggest economies convened to discuss climate change. “Climate change is one of the most defining issues of our time, one that threatens our very existence on Earth.” 

Hamburg_Pharrell_RamonHaindlForGlobalCitizen.jpgImage: Ramon Haindl for Global Citizen

Just like he’s done for his music, Pharrell has collaborated with a wide range of people and organizations in the fight against climate change. 

That includes Al Gore, with whom he organized a 24-hour global concert, called “Live Earth” aimed at creating global solidarity in the fight against climate change (and which was canceledon account of the terrorist attacks in Paris that Fall). 

Pharrell also worked with the fashion brand G-Star Raw to produce a line of clothing made from recycled ocean plastic

Along with his plea to leaders at the COP21, he has spoken about climate change at UN and made a cameo in Al Gore’s documentary “An Inconvenient Sequel.” 

Read More:  'Women Could Save The World': Pharrell Williams Shows His Feminist Side in Interview

“If you don’t take care of your home, then you don’t have a life,” he said at the UN, “so we have to now transition from climate change to climate action.”

Maybe Pharrell’s climate activism has something to do with his own future, as well. He named his first child Rocket Man with the future in mind. 

“In the same way the Indians named their children after a force or animal or element, we named him after a man-made machine that was meant to go up, meant to ascend,” Pharrell told Oprah in 2014. 

Now the father of four, including triplets, Pharrell will be ascending to the Global Citizen stage on September 23. Take action here to win tickets! 

Phineas Rueckert is a writer at Global Citizen. He graduated from Macalester College with a degree in Political Science and International Studies, and spent the past year teaching English in Toulouse, France. He is originally from Brooklyn, New York.

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43
AID AND DEVELOPMENT

5 facts about finance to the world’s poorest countries

September 11 2017 | By: SAMANTHA URBAN

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In our new 2017 DATA Report, we found that aid was at record levels in 2016. That’s a good thing, right? Not entirely: There are still deep inequalities among the countries that benefit from those resources and the quality of financing. In fact, the world’s poorest countries, and above all the world’s poorest citizens, are getting a shrinking share of global financial resources. Most of the people in Africa, which is home to over 50% of the world’s extreme poor, are in danger of being left behind.

With that, here are five facts from the report that can help you understand the situation:

1. Aid is not being given to the countries that need it most.

The share of global aid that went to the world’s least-developed countries dropped from 32% in 2013 to 28% last year. Additionally, the share of aid to Africa declined from 33% in 2015 to 32% in 2016.

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2. In fact, an increasing share of the money is staying within the donor countries.

DAC donors — an international forum of many of the largest funders of aid — spent $15.4 billion on supporting refugees and asylum seekers in their own countries in 2016, an increase of 27% from the previous year. (Although countries should definitely support refugees seeking shelter and safety, this money shouldn’t count as overseas development assistance.)

3. Most African countries are also falling short on their commitments to invest their own resources in areas like health, education, and agriculture — which are critical when a large proportion of the population is living in extreme poverty.

Many of the African fragile states or least-developed countries will need to increase spending on education by roughly 20%, on health by nearly 50%, and on agriculture by more than 100% from current levels in order to meet previous commitments.

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4. Private finance — both domestic and international — will play a key role in supporting a sustainable long-term economic base for taxation, jobs, and inclusive growth.

Businesses and enterprises of all sizes have a role to play in the fight for sustainable development. But investment in Africa has been volatile and unevenly distributed. Just six countries accounted for 75% of the foreign direct investment inflows into Africa’s least developed countries and fragile states in 2016: Angola, Egypt, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Mozambique and Congo.

5. But private finance can’t take the place of public investment.

Overseas development assistance is crucial to fighting extreme poverty and is still a really important resource for the most vulnerable countries.

In 1990, approximately 35,000 children on average died every day from preventable and treatable diseases. Twenty five years later, that number has nearly been cut in half! Over that same period, nearly 1.1 billion people worldwide have been lifted out of extreme poverty. A remarkable partnership between aid donors, foundations, government leaders, civil society, and private sector innovation has been fundamental to these achievements — and we shouldn’t progress slip now. Read the 2017 DATA Report for the full story.

Application Forms and further information can be downloaded from www.creativeengagement.ie

What is our aim:

  • To encourage imagination, creativity, initiative and expression in student
  • Students must be at the centre of the creative process
  • To compliment curricular learning in the arts, culture and heritage

The selection criteria:

  • Student engagement in and ownership of the creative process
  • Evidence of partnership between the students, teacher and visiting artist.
  • Originality and viability of the proposal.
  • Clear plan of action.
  • The costing of the proposal.
  • The school leadership must be members of NAPD.

Financial considerations.

  • The availability of the grant funding for Creative Engagement and number of applicants will determine the amount of the grant per school.
  • Where possible schools will supply evidence of matching funding.
  • Artists are paid through the school, which will receive two cheques during the school year from NAPD, the final one following receipt of the Evaluation of the project.

Partnerships:

NAPD has established working partnerships with The Department of Education and Skills, The Department of Arts Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Poetry Ireland, The Heritage Council, Poetry Ireland, The National Museum, The National Gallery, IMMA, Amnesty International, Local authority Arts Officers and Cavan Monaghan ETB local arts in education Partnership.

Deadline October 24th 2017

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20
AID AND DEVELOPMENT

4 reasons to read this new report on the Global Goals

September 13 2017 | By: SAMANTHA URBAN

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This week, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is launching Goalkeepers, a global event dedicated to fast-tracking the progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals, or Global Goals. (Read all about those here.)

 

As part of the effort, they’re launching an annual report tracking progress on the Goals — highlighting what’s working and what’s not — to inspire bold leadership, spread best practices, and hold leaders accountable. It includes data projections to forecast good and bad future scenarios… with millions of lives hanging in the balance. Why read the report? Well, here are four pretty huge takeaways:

Progress

The world has been on an incredible path of progress: In our lifetimes, we have witnessed the biggest decrease in poverty, disease, and child deaths. Extreme poverty and child deaths have been cut in half, and HIV and maternal deaths have been reduced nearly by half.

HIV.png

Jeopardy

But progress isn’t inevitable. The current political upheaval around the world threatens development budgets and puts at risk the phenomenal progress achieved to date. For example, a mere 10 percent cut in donor funding for HIV treatment could result in more than 5 million more deaths by 2030.

Leadership

For the world to actually achieve the Global Goals, it’ll take commitment and perseverance, as well as continued investments and innovation. But most importantly, it will take leadership at every level.

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Goals

193 governments signed up to the goals, which are essentially a clear plan that countries can implement against — as well as a commitment that citizens should hold their governments accountable to.

By sharing some stories and data behind the goals, Bill and Melinda Gates hope to inspire a new generation of leaders, or “goalkeepers,” who raise awareness of progress, hold their governments accountable, and drive action to achieve the goals! Read the report and discover what’s making a difference in the fight against poverty.

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These tablets bring information and empowerment to women in rural Kenya
1899
TECHNOLOGY

These tablets bring information and empowerment to women in rural Kenya

7 November 2016 6:12PM UTC | By: GUEST BLOGGER

 
   

By Katie G. Nelson

Wearing brightly coloured clothes wrapped around their waists and rings of yellow and red necklaces around their necks, the semi-nomadic women of Samburu, Kenya, live much the same way their ancestors did: raising children, caring for livestock, and tending to the home.
elimu-2But in Samburu, one of the poorest and most isolated regions in Kenya, life is changing for the better, thanks in part to a few yellow tablets, some determination, and a little African-grown ingenuity.

The extreme heat, whipping dust storms, and parched land makes Samburu one of the most inhospitable regions in Kenya. The region known for game reserves and traditional Maasai culture is also known for lagging far behind the rest of Kenya’s education and literacy rates.

elimu-5Only 28.9 percent of Samburu’s residents can read and write, compared to the national average of 66.4 percent. The county also faces high dropout rates for female students due to early marriages and pregnancies.

Those geographically and educational obstacles might seem too big a challenge for many, but for the team at BRCK Education, Samburu was the ideal environment to catalyse change using technology.

elimu-3Piggybacking off the mission of their parent technology company BRCK, which makes rugged Wi-Fi hotspot and router systems, BRCK Education aims to expand connectivity to students in remote areas using Kio Kits, a go-anywhere, do-anything digital classroom in a box.

Contained in watertight black suitcases, each Kio Kit contains a powerful Wi-Fi router, headphones, a charging system, and 40 yellow tablets. Each tablet is pre-loaded with digital content tailored to both local and international curriculum and can be used with or without internet. The kits are currently being used in 12 countries around the world.

Providing access to a wealth of information, no matter your location or income, is core to BRCK Education’s mission or expanding connectivity to isolated and off-the-grid communities around the globe, says Juliana Rotich, co-founder of BRCK.

“Access to information and access to education in general is a equaliser,” says Rotich. “We should be striving to more equality, and equality in those two areas.”

elimu-1For Nivi Sharma, BRCK Education President, the importance of the Kio Kit was even clearer after working in the village of Kiltamany in Samburu, Kenya.

Sharma first forged a relationship with a primary school in Kiltamany under her tech company eLimu, which cultivates and distributes an array of educational and learning content. Sharma was evaluating the impact of the Kio Kit on students and teachers at Kiltamany Primary School when she encountered a group of women from the nearby village who also wanted to learn using the Kio Kit tablets.

Despite the fact that only two of the women knew how to read or write, Sharma and her team decided to leave one tablet with the group; and the results were remarkable.

Upon returning to Samburu several months later, Sharma discovered the women had formed a school that met once a week after they finished fetching water.

“And they had learned to write their own names,” she says. 

Sharma continued following the Samburu women, many of whom learned basic math and later how to read and write, she says.

“The women were saying,  ‘I can’t believe I missed out on this. I now understand that my husband had four goats and he was selling them each at 4,000 shillings. He should’ve brought home 16,000 shillings, not 15,000 shillings.”brck

“We realised that they understood immediately the educational and empowering possibilities of technology not just for their children, but for themselves as well,” Sharma writes.

 But the impact of the Kio Kit wasn’t limited to the classroom, Sharma explains.

“The really interesting thing was we spoke to the (primary school) head teacher and he said the enrolment of girls just shot up because the women are suddenly saying, ‘Oh my god, I don’t want my daughter to miss out on this.’”

elimu-4For girls and women, the opportunity to access any information anytime and anywhere is critical to expanding career opportunities—or even the possibilities—for a life beyond Samburu.

“When you think of the four walls of a classroom, if a girl is curious about something and all her curiosity is contained within those four walls—and the teacher and the textbooks in front of her—that’s really limiting,” says Sharma.

“What digital access means is that she’s able to express and explore her curiosity. To let her voice be heard in a way that traditionally isn’t.”

Call on leaders and innovators from all countries, industries and communities to make universal internet access a reality by adding your name now.

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SEPT. 13, 2017

10 Movies From TIFF That Prove the Future of Film Is Female

This year will hopefully mark the start of a new trend for TIFF.

Jackie Marchildon

By Jackie Marchildon

Brought to you by: CHIME FOR CHANGE

women_at_tiff.jpgCourtesy of TIFF
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This year, the Toronto International Film Festival has made a point of showcasing women in film, both in front of and behind the camera.

Beloved Global Citizen (and one of the hosts for this year’s festival in Central Park) Priyanka Chopra was the guest of honour at the TIFF Soirée, an event with proceeds going to Share Her Journey — a movement that works to increase participation, skills and opportunities for women in film.

This year will hopefully mark the start of a new trend for TIFF. One-third of the films at the festival were directed by women, and 42.4% of the short film creators are female-identified.

And it’s not just directors and short filmmakers that are sweeping the red carpet. This year’s films showcase a number of strong female leads too — characters depicting the lives of real women and fictional badasses too.

With so many options to choose from, here’s a list of 10 to help you get started.

 

1. “55 Steps”

 

With two strong leading ladies, “55 Steps” tells the powerful story of Eleanor Riese, a mentally ill woman who fought with her lawyer, Colette Hughes (Hilary Swank), for the right to greater control when it comes to taking medication.

 

2. “I am not a Witch”

I am not a WitchImage: Courtesy of TIFF

“I am not a Witch” is Rungano Nyoni’s first feature film and not only is the lead character a girl, but the film is in part a critique of society as it relates to gender. The film is vastly different from others on this list as it is fable-like, with interludes of realism peppered throughout.

 

3. “Lady Bird”

 

“Lady Bird” is Greta Gerwig’s solo directorial debut and another on the list with two strong women at the heart of its story. The film follows the ups and downs of adolescence with feisty lead character Christine McPherson (Saoirse Ronan) and her critical mother (Laurie Metcalf).

 

4. “The Breadwinner”

 

Directed by Nora Twomey, “The Breadwinner” has a female director as well as a female lead, and was produced by Angelina Jolie. Based on Deborah Ellis’ award-winning novel, this animated film follows the story of an 11-year-old Afghan girl who disguises herself as a boy so that she can work to help her family and search for her father after he is arrested by the Taliban.

 

5. “Professor Marston & the Wonder Women”

 

While this story is in some ways about a man, the real interest lies in the creation of the female icon Wonder Woman. It is directed by the charismatic Angela Robinson and tells the story of how William Moulton Marston (Luke Evans) came to create Wonder Woman by being inspired by two real-life wonder women — he lived as a trio with his wife, Elizabeth (Rebecca Hall) and their partner Olive Byrne (Bella Heathcote).

 

6. “A Fantastic Woman”

 

A painful but beautiful film, “A Fantastic Woman” follows the life of a young transgender woman coping with the loss of her older lover, Orlando (Francisco Reyes), while also dealing with his family’s personal attacks and police investigations following Orlando’s death.

 

7. “Battle of the Sexes”

 

“Battle of the Sexes” relives the tennis match between Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) that sparked a sexual revolution. It serves as a reminder of the ever-existent sexism seen today. Feminist King is nothing short of a female champion and her character is fun, humorous and inspiring.

 

8. “Breathe”

 

While “Breathe” is more of a love story, it’s also an example of female strength. When Robin Cavendish (Andrew Garfield) get polio and becomes paralyzed from the neck down, he refuses to give in to his disability. He and his wife Diana (Claire Foy) begin campaigning for rights for the disabled, also creating respirator wheelchairs and hydraulic lifts. Diana shines as a beacon of strength in this film, showcasing an inspiring woman who is an incredible caregiver and hero.

 

9. “First They Killed My Father”

 

Angelina Jolie co-produced, co-wrote, and directed this film, which is an adaptation of Loung Ung’s memoir. Ung’s story recalls her devastating childhood under the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia. Jolie and Ung also attended the Women in the World Summit in Toronto on Monday.

 

10. “Don’t Talk To Irene”

 

Irene Willis (Michelle McLeod) is an overweight teenager who dreams of becoming a cheerleader. When things don’t pan out the way she intends, and she ends up forced to volunteer at a long-term care home, she creates her own dance crew. Like so many other women, Willis can be funny and still empowering.

Just as these titles vary in topics, Global Citizen campaigns on a number of different issues including gender equality, health and citizenships. You can take action here.

Jackie Marchildon is a Bilingual Editor at Global Citizen in Toronto.

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About Our Partner

CHIME FOR CHANGE is a global campaign founded by Gucci in 2013 to convene, unite and strengthen the voices speaking out for girls and women around the world. The campaign uses innovative approaches to promote gender equality. Co-founded by Beyoncé Knowles-Carter and Salma Hayek Pinault, CHIME FOR CHANGE works with a coalition of partner organizations, including the Kering Foundation, Facebook, and Hearst Magazines.

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