In the poorest regions of India, widows are a burden. Formerly, they would be burnt alive while their husbands were cremated. Today, many widows are made to leave their families and forced to beg in the streets. Fortunately, some Hindu monasteries are able to offer shelter and hope to these betrayed women.
Cambodia, with its cheap labour, is an attractive place for many international fashion brands to manufacture their clothes. However, low production prices are often only achieved by violating workers’ rights. Most women working in clothes factories are fired as soon as they get pregnant.
Colombia has been in a state of civil war for over half a century. The biggest and most influential of the rebel groups that oppose the government is the FARC-EP. Since 2012, it’s been in peace talks with the government. We met with the rebels (almost half of whom are women) to find out why they joined the fight and what their hopes are for the long-awaited peace.
Every year, crowds from around the world flock to the small Serbian town of Guca, for its famous, annual trumpet festival. The lively, upbeat music makes for a great summer event and gives less-known bands a chance to get noticed and make it big. But behind the fun and carefree festive atmosphere, few people see the gruelling demands placed on the musicians dedicated to their art.
Sometimes we all feel like keeping a distance from everyone else, retreating to a remote corner of the world and living like a hermit. Few of us ever actually do it though. This young fisherwoman from the icy island of Sakhalin has opted for a life of solitude but was it really a choice?
14 women on a sail boat, but this is no pleasure cruise. The Sea Dragon is taking them on a scientific expedition to the Caribbean. On a mission to explore the extent of plastic pollution in the Atlantic Ocean, their main focus is the proliferation of micro-plastic that poisons fish and can harm humans. They also hope to educate children about how to reduce the use of plastic.
Egypt is a land where the concept of gender equality has barely taken root. It’s hard for women to make ends meet and even harder if they happen to be single parents. When Sisa’s husband died, leaving her alone to bring up and feed a young daughter, she came up with a novel solution; she became a man! For the next 43 years she pretended to be male. Now in her 60s, she has no doubts about living that lie, saying it was a far better choice than taking another husband.
In Tanzania, the tradition of child brides is still prevalent. Despite strict laws against this practice, promising harsh punishment for grooms and parents, young girls are still married off to much older men. In exchange, the family of the bride receives cows that it considers more useful than their daughter.
Should prostitution be legalised, banned or left to its own devices? The main protagonists in this film are former and current sex workers, victims of circumstance and members of their own trade union. And they all have a very diverse range of opinions on this controversial subject.
In modern-day Albania, a medieval tradition has survived to this day in which a woman can take a man’s place as the head of a family. Surprisingly, a few women still observe the custom, they’re known as sworn virgins. Under the strict rules of a centuries-old code, they sacrifice their own identities to stand in for brothers who have died. Most had to make the choice at a very early age. They did it to help their families but it comes at a price, they can never have children of their own.
To them, boxing is more than just a sport: it gives freedom, empowerment and the confidence to stand up for themselves. They're the students of Karachi’s first boxing school for girls. Training here, they feel better able to protect themselves but more than that, they also know they achieve more than what their conservative society expects of them.