Africa Rising

“An inspiring and hopeful film. Despite the deep sadness I felt for these girls, the good news is that the grassroots movement is strong and leading the global fight against Female Genital Mutilation to save each and every girl.”--Edwidge Danticat 


Africa Rising is a documentary film about the grassroots movement to end FGM across Africa.

From the Horn of Africa to the Western shores of the sub-Saharan nations, every day 6,000 girls are subjected to a practice called female genital mutilation or FGM. And everyday with little more than fierce determination and deep love for their communities, brave activists are leading the path against all odds to break the silence about this centuries-old tradition. Together, these women and men have created a formidable grassroots movement to end FGM.

Africa Rising is an extraordinary film presenting an insightful look at the frontlines of a quiet revolution taking the African continent by storm. Masterfully directed by Paula Heredia, Africa Rising paints an intimate portrait of courageous individuals with dignity and strength, whose passion for justice is changing the course of history. Traveling through remote villages in Burkina Faso, Kenya, Mali, Somalia and Tanzania, Africa Rising celebrates the resilience and determination of the human spirit to change destiny against all odds.


We often hear of stories of brutality and horror related to the practice of FGM, but seldom do we hear of the stories of courage. This is why Equality Now decided to produce Africa Rising. The film highlights the powerful and inspiring changes spearheaded by our partners.


Africa Rising has been screened for a wide variety of audiences including film festival attendees, students, activists, health professionals, parliamentarians and decision-makers in Kenya, Mali, Spain, Tanzania, U.S., U.K., Zanzibar, and elsewhere. It has been screened at several film festivals including: FESPACO in Burkina Faso; Egypt International Film Festival; Kenya International Film Festival; Zanzibar International Film Festival; MujerDoc Film Festival in Spain; Doxa Film Festival in Vancouver, Canada;  Urbanworld Film Festival in New York; The Flying Broom Film Festival in Ankara, Turkey; Amnesty International’s Reel Awareness Film Festival in Toronto, Canada; Brilliant Light International Film Festival L.A.


Absolutely! Please consider sharing Africa Rising with your networks, or organize a house party/screening with friends to spread the message of this hopeful film and continue to support the critical work to end female genital mutilation around the world. 

You can purchase Africa Rising in the U.S. through our U.S. distributor, Women Make Movies. Outside the U.S., please contact or