A film developed by beneficiaries of the Amref Dagoretti Child Protection and Development Centre has received an international film award.
‘The Cut’, a film about a young boy trying to save his younger sister from female genital mutilation (FGM) and a forced early marriage received the Award for Best Feature at the second edition of the Africa Diaspora Cinema Festival held in Florence, Italy from July 5 to 8, 2018.
The Amref Health Africa in Kenya supported Dagoretti Film School partnered with a former beneficiary of the Amref Dagoretti Child Protection and Development Centre, Peter Wangugi, now an award winning filmmaker, to develop the 63 minute feature film. Sub themes covered in the film include gender-based violence, alcoholism, sexual abuse and maternal health.
The film aims to reach local and international audiences with messages on child protection while raising awareness on the child protection work of Amref Health Africa in Kenya through various projects and the Amref Dagoretti Child Protection and Development Centre in particular.
The film has been submitted to various film festivals, receiving nominations in Africa, America and Europe, including the Zanzibar International Film Festival ZIFF 2018 (July 7 – 15, 2018).
The Africa Diaspora Cinema Festival seeks to raise awareness about the potential of African Cinema and the socio-economic impact it has not only on African economies, but gradually expanding to other parts of the world’s economy. A total of 2,000 films were submitted to the Festival.
Developing ‘The Cut’
A participatory approach was adopted in the development of the film. To form a foundation for the script, children from the Amref Dagoretti Child Protection and Development Centre borrowed from their experiences and those from the community to write stories on the abuse of children’s rights. Most of the scenes in the movie were drawn from real life events and the children at the Centre were presented with a chance to audition for different roles including as main characters, as well as supporting cast.
After scriptwriting, the youth, most of whom are former beneficiaries of the Centre and from the community, also participated in the development of the film with many of them training in make-up and special effects, sound recording, scripting, production design including art on set, continuity, and as camera and sound assistants.