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For the society, by the students

A bunch of young women running around with a big camera in their hand is not an unusual sight at the Sophia college campus this week. Every year, the students of the Sophia Institute of Social Communications Media (SCM) gear up for an exhibition that showcases what the students have worked on over the year.

This year the festival will include the screening of four documentaries: Streeyansathi (an English-Marathi documentary on the lack of public toilets for women in India), ‘I’dentity (on the journey of those with gender identity disorder), The Spirit of Women (on women and alcohol abuse) and Parenting Solo (on the difficulties of single parenting).


A still from the  documentary Spirit of women that deals with the subject of  women  and alcoholism

Twenty-one year-old Sharon Flynn who directed the documentary ‘I’dentity says, “We shot the film with a lot of love and hard work. I hope in the end it is going to be worth it.” Ten girls working on a project seems like a big team challenge, but Flynn disagrees. “ All of us worked together, arguments and disagreements are a part and parcel of a joint effort.”

One of the things the students discovered while shooting is that it is difficult to make a person speak about his or her personal life. Shweta Thotumadil, director of Parenting Solo, explains, “We had to shoot several takes before we could get the protagonists open up about their personal lives. But it was a learning experience not only for them but also for us.”

The event will also showcase a photo-exhibition and a social awareness campaign. One campaign will be titled: DOTS Se Kar Lo Dosti — aimed at encouraging TB patients to enrol in the Directly Observed Treatment (DOTS) programme, while Sirf Diabetes? will be aimed at women with diabetes. The exhibition will also showcase a magazine called Marginalia that follows the lives of those who live on the margins of society.

Jeroo F. Mulla, head, Sophia Institute of Social Communications Media is delighted at the work that her students put in for the event. “I am very happy that my students are showcasing such diverse subjects. It is indeed an honour for me to host this exhibition,” she concludes.

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