Variant

Silence Interrupted

 

Silence Interrupted

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CHALLENGE

The Women’s Resource Center and their partners were working to pass the first ever domestic violence law in Armenia. In order to do this, they needed to get more people to talk about their own battles with domestic violence and other sexual violence in a culture where that discussion was taboo. Our job was to help break the silence and encourage people to speak out about gender based violence.

SOLUTION

Creating a film and distribution strategy that would encourage women in Armenia to speak out and seek help for gender based violence.

OVERVIEW

In 2012 and 2013, when this film was created, advocates, lawyers and service providers were working to show the extent of gender based violence in Armenia to counter those who denied it was a problem in the country and to help support the first ever law making illegal domestic violence. This film was used to break the silence about gender-based violence in Armenia through the involvement of survivors and a home screening campaign. It was informed by lawyers, service providers, and others who worked on gender based violence and was part of a broader legal strategy to impact legal change in Armenia.

We worked with women from the Women’s Resource Center first to train them in basic documentary filmmaking and then to actually direct and produce a film that could be used by service providers, lawyers, and other advocates for legal change. We also developed a much needed distribution strategy that addressed the taboo nature of the issue so that people would feel more comfortable speaking out about their experiences.  The film featured religious leaders, experts, women victims, their lawyers, and service providers to show the importance of “breaking the silence”. It was used in presentations by the Women’s Resource Center and their ally, the Women’s Support Center, as well as at home screenings across Armenia.

Created with the New Media Advocacy Project. Available in Armenian and English