Bipartisan Members of Congress Stand With The Coalition Against Gendercide

Capitol Screening of It’s a Girl Shines Spotlight on Pressing Human Rights Issue
Attempted Delivery of Two Hundred Thousand Petitions Calling on China to End Gendercide

WASHINGTON – April 25, 2013 – A bipartisan trio of Congressmen joined together with a nonpartisan coalition of organizations from across the political spectrum this week on Capitol Hill to help raise awareness of the fact that the three deadliest words in the world today are “it’s a girl.”

In India, China and many other parts of the world today girls are killed, aborted and abandoned simply because they are girls.  The United Nations estimates as many as 200 million girls are missing in the world today because of this so-called “gendercide” – the deliberate extermination of girls simply because they are girls.

As part of the effort to help bring attention to this war against girls worldwide, Congressmen Chris Smith (R-NJ), Jim Moran (D-VA), and Mark Meadows (R-NC) joined with the Coalition Against Gendercide to host a special Capitol screening of It’s A Girl, a powerful and thought-provoking documentary film.  It’s A Girl was shot on location in India and China and reveals the issue of gendercide by exploring the stories of the victims, families, global experts and grassroots activists.

Gendercide “is a crime against women, a gender crime that has no parallel or precedent in all of human history,” said Congressman Smith, who chairs the House International Relations Africa, Global Human Rights and International Operations Subcommittee and Co-Chairs the Congressional-Executive Commission on China. “This film will awaken many to these atrocities and will hopefully call forth men and women of goodwill in every country of the world.”

“In the early years of this country slavery was excused by many as… a cultural thing.  It wasn’t cultural, it was wrong.  Similarly [gendercide] is not cultural, this is criminal,” added Congressman Moran, a senior Democrat on the powerful House Appropriations Committee. “The extent to which we stand by on the sidelines and don’t do anything about it makes us culpable as well. Today, what this country and this world needs to be about is ending gendercide because it is…inexcusable.”

Gendercide “has led to horrifying increases in human trafficking, sexual slavery and gang rapes,” said Congressman Meadows, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, pointing to the recent headlines and international outrage about the rape and torture of a 5-year old girl in New Delhi.  “We talk about wanting to find more common ground in Washington DC.  And this is an issue where Democrats and Republicans can absolutely agree.  Gendercide must be stopped.”

“The statistics are staggering in India. The Indian Crime Records Bureau reports that the rapes of children, which can ultimately of course lead to death, have increased 336% in India in the past 10 years,” noted Jill McElya, Vice President of the Invisible Girl Project, a partner in the Coalition Against Gendercide active in India.  The recent New Delhi horror, on the heels of the gang rape of a 23-year old woman that raised national and international outrage a few months ago “illustrates the problem that is going on in India. The laws are there to protect women but the laws must be enforced. Corruption must be stopped. People must be taught that girls are every bit as valuable because they are human beings.”

“This is truly an issue about which the left and right can agree. No one supports forced abortion because it’s not a choice,” said Reggie Littlejohn, President of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, a partner in the Coalition Against Gendercide active in helping women in China.  “Together, China and India comprise one third of the world’s population. That one third of the world’s women are deprived of the right to bear girls is the biggest women’s rights issue on earth.”

“Gendercide cannot be lumped into simply an issue about abortion. It’s broader than that. This is about violence against women, discrimination against women and it really is an area of tremendous common ground,” said Andrew Brown, the producer of It’s A Girl.  “That is something we are committed to as filmmakers as we screen this film around the world, at the British Parliament, the European Parliament, the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women, and here in Washington this week.  We call on the leaders here in the U.S. and those around the world to take meaningful action against this extreme injustice.”

In the wake of the Capitol screening of It’s A Girl Tuesday evening, Wednesday Congressman Smith joined with Littlejohn and other members of the Coalition Against Gendercide at the Capitol to highlight the more than two hundred thousand petitions signed by people around the world through the Causes platform demanding that China end forced abortion and sterilization under the One Child Policy, and take action against gendercide.  Smith, Littlejohn and the Director of It’s A Girl – Evan Grae Davis – then attempted to deliver the petitions to the Chinese Embassy in Washington, but the embassy staff refused to open the doors to accept them.

“Thank you to the Coalition Against Gendercide for shining a spotlight on this critical issue.  Thank you to the makers of the It’s A Girl film for bringing the stories of women suffering and dying in India and China to the notice of the world.  Thank you for helping to collect these petitions with over 200,000 signatures to end gendercide and forced abortions in China,” Congressman Smith said at the Wednesday Press Conference in front of the Capitol, adding that thankfully, some organizations are making a difference. “The “Save a Girl” Campaign by Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, and the Invisible Girl Project are saving the lives of girls in China and India.”

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The Coalition Against Gendercide includes Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, Invisible Girl Project, the YWCA, The Heritage Foundation, The Jubilee Campaign, CWA, One Million Bones, Darfur Women Action Group, UPstander International, The Enough Project, Raise Hope for Congo, and STAND: The student-led movement to end mass atrocities.

For more information on the film: www.ItsaGirlMovie.com

CONTACT:
Ellis Brachman
EBrachman@BullFightStrategies.com
(202) 669-5304

It’s a Girl Documentary Inspires Music Video by Hip Hop Artist Omékongo Dibinga

January 15, 2013 – Activist and rap artist Omékongo Dibinga joins forces with the production team behind the documentary “It’s a Girl” to release a new music video inspired by the film.

It’s a Girl, produced by Shadowline Films, is an American documentary film that tells the story of gendercide in India and China. After seeing just the film trailer in early 2012 Omékongo Dibinga  was inspired to lend his voice to the cause. Dibinga – a rapper, trilingual poet, CNN contributor, motivational speaker, TV Talk Show Host and the Director of UPstander International – put pen to paper and wrote a hip-hop song.  “I wrote this song because hip-hop is a global force,” says Omékongo, “yet too many hip-hop artists do not use their powerful skills and influence to speak on issues like these. I want to use my talent to make a positive change in this world.”

Every year, millions of young girls are killed, neglected, or abandoned simply because they are girls. The United Nations estimates as many as 200 million girls are missing in the world today because of this gendercide.

After writing the lyrics, Dibinga shared them with the film’s director, Evan Grae Davis. “When Omékongo approached us with the lyrics to this rap song he had written, I was deeply moved with how he expressed his heart for the victims of gendercide around the world. I’m sure having two daughters of his own makes it personal. His words reflect a deep passion against the injustice of gendercide in a way we wanted to share, so we asked him if he would record the song!” Davis said.

Omékongo recruited Lindsay Samakow, a talented debut vocal artist, to provide the backdrop as he recorded his song titled after the film, “It’s a Girl.”

“I was so inspired when I heard the song for the first time,” says Davis, “that I wanted to produce the music video to bring it alive in a new dimension. We filmed Omékongo performing the song on the streets of New York City and in Central park with his two beautiful daughters and niece. We added in several clips from the documentary, and now have a music video that truly captures his heart for justice.” Davis concluded, “The result is a haunting and compelling expression of one man’s reaction to one of the greatest human rights issues of our time. If more people responded as Omékongo has, we could truly change the world!”

The music video is available on YouTube, and the song is available on iTunes. “It’s a Girl” is currently on an international screening tour. To bring the film to your corner of the world, email screenings@itsagirlmovie.com.

Available Photos: (Click for high resolution versions)

About It’s a Girl

Shot on location in India and China, “It’s a Girl” reveals the genercide in India and China and why so little is being done to save girls and women.  The documentary tells the stories of abandoned and trafficked girls, of women who suffer extreme dowry-related violence, of brave mothers fighting to save their daughters’ lives, and of other mothers who would kill for a son. Global experts and grassroots activists put the stories in context and advocate different paths towards change, while collectively lamenting the lack of any truly effective action against this injustice. “It’s a Girl” is in the midst of its international screening tour. Learn more at www.itsagirlmovie.com.

About Omékongo Dibinga

Omékongo Dibinga is the UPstander. His life’s mission is to inspire all across the globe to take a stand when they witness an injustice, no matter how small or large. Omékongo is a motivational speaker, trilingual poet, CNN contributor, TV talk show host, and rapper. His Urban Music Award winning work has best been described by Nikki Giovanni as “outstanding, exciting, and new while being very old.” His book, From the Limbs of My Poetree was described by Essence Magazine as “a remarkable and insightful collection of exquisite poetry that touches sacred places within your spirit.” He was one of 5 international recipients out of 750,000 to win the first ever “CNN iReport Spirit Award.”

It’s A Girl Announces Partnership With Causes.com

New Documentary Film Calls for Action Worldwide Against Gendercide; Teams Up With Causes to Move from Awareness to Action 

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TUCSON, ARIZ. – October 11, 2012It’s a Girl announces its new partnership with Causes.com, an online platform that leverages the power of social media to make an impact in a new era of activism. It’s a Girl launched an online campaign powered by Causes to allow audiences of the film to move from awareness to action. The campaign gives people simple, direct ways to get involved in the movement to end gendercide. This includes petitioning world leaders to end gendercide, and donating to partner non-profits Women’s Rights Without Frontiers and the Invisible Girl Project who are working against gendercide at the grassroots level in India and China.

“We created Causes to help ordinary people build movements for change,” said Matt Mahan, Causes President and CEO. “It’s a Girl is sparking one of those movements right now: people from around the world are coming together online to take action against one of the greatest tragedies in human history. We’re honored to be a platform for their incredibly important work.”

Causes provides free and easy tools for individuals and nonprofits to spread the word, find support, raise money, and build momentum for their cause and make an impact in the world. So far, over 180 million people have taken action for over 500,000 unique causes, making it the best place to run an action campaign or get involved. Every campaign on Causes is automatically integrated with Facebook’s custom open graph, allowing for easy share via Timeline and newsfeed. The ability for supporters to tweet, email, and post a Facebook status update is a click away on every campaign page.

“Today, as we observe the first United Nation’s International Day of the Girl, the need for collective action against the most extreme form of violence against women and girls is greater than ever. That’s what our film and this movement is about,” says Evan Grae Davis, director of It’s a Girl. “Causes values our vision and with their technology platform and passionate team, they are the ideal partner in this movement to save women and girls.”

It’s a Girl is a powerful and thought-provoking documentary film that brings attention to the gendercide happening every day in China, India and other parts of Southeast Asia. The United Nations estimates that because of this, there are as many as 200 million females missing from the world today. This war against girls is revealed through the stories of the victims, families, global experts and grassroots activists. Shot on location in India and China, It’s a Girl asks why this is happening and why so little is being done to save girls and women.

Anyone can help bring awareness to gendercide and obtain a license to show the film by visiting the It’s a Girl website (www.itsagirlmovie.com), where additional resources are also provided on how to get involved in the fight to save women and girls around the world.

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About Shadowline Films
Shadowline Films is a team of filmmakers who share a common concern for the critical issues of our time; capturing the human story and presenting those who engage in its films the opportunity to become a part of telling how the story ends. It’s a Girl is Shadowline Films’ first feature-length documentary film exploring the issue of gendercide in India and China. It’s a Girl’s international screening tour began in September 2012. Learn more at www.itsagirlmovie.com.

About Causes.com
Causes.com is an online platform that provides tools for driving change. With 180 million users and over 500,000 campaigns for change, Causes is the world’s largest platform for activism and philanthropy. Causes enables grassroots organizers, nonprofits and companies run online, social impact campaigns that raise brand awareness, engage targeted audiences, and gather dynamic communities.

Media Contact:
Megan Ashley MacLeod
megan@workshopcollective.com
925.683.0660

It’s A Girl Reaches Audiences Around The World With International Screening Tour

Official Selection for Amnesty International’s 2012 REEL AWARENESS Film Festival New Documentary Film Calls for Action Worldwide Against Gendercide 

TUCSON, ARIZ. – October 2, 2012 – It’s a Girl, a powerful and thought-provoking new documentary film, announces its official selection in Amnesty International’s 2012 REEL AWARENESS Film Festival. This announcement coincides with the launch of the It’s a Girl international screening tour that includes showcasing at the European Parliament in Brussels, British Parliament in London, and in Bern, Switzerland, in affiliation with the UN Women National Committee Switzerland and Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs. In addition, the film is slated to screen in a variety of cities across India, Australia, Canada, the United States and other countries around the world.

The REEL AWARENESS Film Festival, started by a group of Amnesty International volunteers in 2005, selects exceptional films that are focused on paramount human rights concerns. Each screening incorporates a call-to-action, and asks audiences to participate in letter writing, petition signing and post card actions on related Amnesty International campaigns.

In partnership with Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, Women’s Rights in China, the Invisible Girl Project and other organizations working on behalf of women and girls, It’s a Girl hosts its international screening tour with the ultimate goal of raising awareness for gendercide worldwide and providing audiences with actionable steps to end it.

“We are honored to be selected for the REEL AWARENESS film festival,” says Evan Grae Davis, director of It’s a Girl. “Amnesty International has a strong reputation as a champion for human rights globally and this festival is an ideal venue where we can work together to expose the injustice of gendercide. With the help of Amnesty and other leading organizations around the world, including UN committees and the European Parliament, we hope to educate and empower the global community to help end this war against girls.”

It’s a Girl exposes the gendercide happening every day in China, India and other parts of Southeast Asia. The United Nations estimates there are as many as 200 million females missing from the world today due to gendercide. This war against girls is revealed through the stories of the victims, families, global experts and grassroots activists. Shot on location in India and China, It’s a Girl asks why this is happening and why so little is being done to save girls and women.

For a current list of international screenings, visit www.itsagirlmovie.com. Anyone can help bring awareness to gendercide and obtain a license to show the film by visiting the It’s a Girl website, where additional resources are also provided on how to get involved in the fight to save women and girls around the world.

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About Shadowline Films
Shadowline Films is a team of filmmakers who share a common concern for the critical issues of our time; capturing the human story and presenting those who engage in its films the opportunity to become a part of telling how the story ends. It’s a Girl is Shadowline Films’ first feature-length documentary film exploring the issue of gendercide in India and China. It’s a Girl’s international screening tour began in September 2012. Learn more at www.itsagirlmovie.com.

Media Contact:
Megan Ashley MacLeod
megan@workshopcollective.com
925.683.0660

It’s a Girl Launches International Screening Tour With Special Screening at the University of Arizona

New Documentary Film Calls for Action Worldwide Against Gendercide University of Arizona and Shadowline Films Co-Host Screening Q&A with Director Evan Grae Davis

TUCSON, ARIZ. – September 13, 2012 – The Department of Gender & Women’s Studies at the University of Arizona and Shadowline Films will co-host a special screening of It’s a Girl on September 21, 2012 at 6:00pm PST at Gallagher Theater. A powerful and thought-provoking documentary film, It’s a Girl brings attention to the gendercide happening every day in India, as well as China and other parts of Southeast Asia.

The United Nations estimates that there are as many as 200 million girls missing around the world today because of gendercide. This war against girls is told through the stories of the victims, families, global experts and grassroots activists. Shot on location in India and China, It’s a Girl asks why this is happening and why so little is being done to save girls and women.

It’s a Girl director and Tucson resident, Evan Grae Davis, will introduce the film and host a Q&A after the screening.

“We are excited to kick off the international screening tour from right here in Tucson, where so many have worked to make this film possible,” said Davis. “As we launch our action campaign to end gendercide, we want to start here in our own community and then see it spread globally. I believe that the stories of It’s a Girl will capture hearts around the world and will compel us all to rise up and fuel this movement to end gender-based violence and killings.”

The Tucson screening marks the official launch of the film’s international screening tour. In partnership with Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, Women’s Rights in China, the Invisible Girl Project and other organizations working on behalf of women and girls worldwide, the tour’s ultimate goal is to raise awareness for gendercide worldwide and provide audiences with actionable steps to end it.

As part of the international screening tour, It’s a Girl is slated to screen later this fall at European Parliament in Brussels, British Parliament in London, and in Berne, Switzerland in affiliation with the UN Women National Committee Switzerland and Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs.

Anyone can help bring awareness to gendercide and obtain a license to show the film by visiting www.itsagirlmovie.com.
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About Shadowline Films
Shadowline Films is a team of filmmakers who share a common concern for the critical issues of our time; capturing the human story and presenting those who engage in its films the opportunity to become a part of telling how the story ends. It’s a Girl is Shadowline Films’ first feature-length documentary film exploring the issue of gendercide in India and China. It’s a Girl is set to release in September 2012. Learn more at www.itsagirlmovie.com.

About the Department of Gender & Women’s Studies at the University of Arizona
The Department of Gender and Women’s Studies (GWS) at the University of Arizona stands at the cutting edge of interdisciplinary research and teaching. Located 70 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border and the export-processing zone across the border, and surrounded by Native American reservations, Tucson and the University provide a particularly appropriate site for the feminist study of transnational, cultural, economic, and social processes. GWS was founded in 1975 and gained full departmental status in 1997, currently offering B.A., M.A./J.D., and Ph.D. degree programs. GWS’s renowned faculty—composed of 13 core faculty members and over 60 affiliates from across the University—work in a wide range of areas, including critical race studies, sexuality and the body, feminist technoscience studies, gender and health, social movements, reproductive politics, feminist pedagogy, human rights and development, migration studies, and feminist/queer/post-structural theories. GWS’s member-based community organization, WOSAC, sponsors the celebrated Women’s Plaza of Honor.

 

Media Contact:
Megan Ashley MacLeod
megan@workshopcollective.com
925.683.0660

It’s a Girl Announces Partnership with Tugg

New Documentary Film Calls for Action Worldwide Against Gendercide Documentry Heads to Theaters Throughout the United States In New Partnership

TUCSON, ARIZ. – August 16, 2012 – It’s a Girl announces its partnership with Tugg, Inc. (“Tugg”), a web-platform that enables audiences to crowd-source the films that play in their local theater. In conjunction with the launch of the film’s official international screening tour, Tugg will help make It’s a Girl available to movie fans throughout the United States and in their local theaters simply by having advocates submit a request online and sharing with friends via their favorite social networks.

It’s a Girl is a powerful and thought-provoking documentary film that brings attention to the gendercide happening every day in China, India and other parts of Southeast Asia. The United Nations estimates that because of this, there are as many as 200 million females missing from the world today. This war against girls is revealed through the stories of the victims, families, global experts and grassroots activists. Shot on location in India and China, It’s a Girl asks why this is happening and why so little is being done to save girls and women.

The main goal of the film is to raise awareness of the gendercide happening worldwide and through its international screening tour to provide audiences with actionable steps to end it. The film has partnered with Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, Women’s Rights in China, the Invisible Girl Project and other organizations working on behalf of women and girls to put an end to acts of gendercide and help the victims of it.

“We are thrilled to be working with Tugg to help bring It’s a Girl to audiences throughout the US,” said Evan Grae Davis, director of It’s a Girl. “It is our hope that by educating the public on gendercide, we can help end this war against girls. I believe that the stories of It’s a Girl will capture hearts around the world and will compel us all to rise up and fuel a movement to end gender-based violence and killings. Tugg gives us a unique opportunity to reach theaters and audiences at a greater capacity and create greater awareness on such an important issue.”

To call for an end to gendercide and help educate their community, anyone can obtain a license to show the film by visiting the film’s website (www.itsagirlmovie.com), or if in the United States visiting www.itsagirlmovie.com/tugg and bring it to a theater near them. The It’s a Girl website also provides additional resources on how to get involved in the fight to save women and girls.

About Shadowline Films
Shadowline Films is a team of filmmakers who share a common concern for the critical issues of our time; capturing the human story and presenting those who engage in its films the opportunity to become a part of telling how the story ends. It’s a Girl is Shadowline Films’ first feature-length documentary film exploring the issue of gendercide in India and China. It’s a Girl is set to release in September 2012. Learn more at www.itsagirlmovie.com.

About Tugg, Inc.
Tugg, Inc. (“Tugg”) is a web-platform that enables individuals to choose the films that play in their local theaters.  Through Tugg, individuals are empowered to select a film, screening time, and nearby theater, and then spread the word to their immediate and online community. Once a necessary amount of people commit to attending, the event will be confirmed, and Tugg will reserve the theater, manage ticketing and ensure delivery of the film; allowing the audience to sit back and enjoy the show.  Tugg is currently working with exhibitors Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, AMC Theatres, Bow Tie Cinemas, Cinemark Theatres, Goodrich Quality Cinemas, Rave Cinemas and Regal Cinemas, and will be expanding its exhibitor offerings in the coming weeks. These exhibitors will provide theatrical venues for individually curated events showcasing Tugg’s growing library of hundreds of studio and independent films.

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Media Contact:

Megan Ashley MacLeod
The Workshop
+1 925.683.0660
megan@workshopcollective.com