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Ethiopia has one of the highest child marriage rates in the world. 43% of girls in Ethiopia's Amhara region are married before the age of 15. In response, the United Nations Foundation (UNF) has established educational programs throughout Ethiopia that put girls and women through school, and challenge traditional thinking on child marriage. By investing in education, the UNF hopes to inspire a change in local sentiment surrounding this sensitive cultural issue.

A Lasting Impact focuses on the personal experiences of those who have had their lives changed due to the influence of these UNF sponsored programs. The video further explores the larger implications that reforms like these create.

Client: United Nations Foundation
Published: September 20, 2010
The Challenge
In order to best tell the story of their involvement in Ethiopia, the UNF asked MediaStorm to produce a video that was representative of a single girl’s experience. The UNF provided MediaStorm with nearly 45 hours worth of video from two separate projects to accomplish this goal. However, both sets of footage were shot to give a general overview of the issue. The challenge of the project was to develop a narrative from that footage, which evoked a more personal connection to the problem of child marriage in Ethiopia.

The Solution
MediaStorm reviewed the transcripts of dozens of interviews made in Ethiopia. Content from several of those interviews were used to create a cohesive script. That script was then shared with the UNF using Google Docs, and regular drafts of the project were submitted to the client for review. By combining the best content of several individual interviews into a single narrative, A Lasting Impact shows how one girl could interact with UNF programs at various stages in her life.

Screen Shot
Screen Shot
The Results
The UNF plans to screen the film at several high profile events in October of 2010, and will further use the piece as an educational tool to explain the situation of girls and women in Ethiopia.

About the Client
The United Nations Foundation was created in 1998 with the unprecedented gift of $1 billion from philanthropist Ted Turner. The UNF connects public and private resources to help the United Nations solve problems on a global scale. Their website provides information on the various programs and issues they are involved in, as well as ways for individuals to participate in the solutions it has developed.

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