1th DMZ Docs(2009)
I AM DOCU
Jackie, Mildred, Eureka, Sdudla, and Thuli are the women behind Bobbi Bear, a nonprofit organization based in Durban, South Africa, that counsels sexually abused children and works to bring their abusers to justice. Born out of recognition of cultural stigmas that discourage reporting abuse and inadequate methods of communicating with young victims, Bobbi Bear developed a method of letting children use teddy bears to explain their abuse. Since 1992, the multiracial staff has become the fearless and powerful voice for those victims who would otherwise continue to live in fear, powerless against their oppressors and ignored by the legal system. Director Kim Longinotto adeptly and intimately follows Bobbi Bear staff in difficult direct sessions with children and consultations with family members, and on raids with authorities to arrest the perpetrators of these heinous acts. Facing tragedy daily as part of their advocacy work and, heartbreakingly for some, in their personal lives, the women draw strength from each other and find hope despite the suffering around them. Equally as compassionate to the young victims as they are steadfast in their pursuit of justice, these five exceptional women have found themselves transformed by their mission into “rough aunties,” crossing barriers of race, culture, and socioeconomic status to become formidable agents of change in their community. Once again Longinotto has managed to bring us an intimate portrait of change from Africa, this time from post-apartheid South Africa, a nation being transformed with hope and energy into a new democracy.
Kim LONGINOTTO is a British documentary filmmaker, well known for making films about extraordinary women and also the plight of female victims of oppression or discrimination. LONGINOTTO studied camera and directing at the National Film and Television School in Beaconsfield, England, where she later followed friend and future filmmaker Nick BROOMFIELD. While studying, she made a documentary about her boarding school that was shown at the London Film Festival, and has continued to be a prolific observational documentary film maker ever since. She has received a number of awards for her films over the years, including a BAFTA for her documentary Pink Saris. Love is All (2014) Salma (2013) Pink Saris (2010) Rough Aunties (2008) Hold Me Tight, Let Me Go (2007)
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