Community - September 29, 2010

Woodside director screens 'Tapestries of Hope'

"Tapestries of Hope," a documentary on young rape survivors in Zimbabwe, directed by Michealene Cristini Risley of Woodside, will be screened simultaneously in more than 100 movie theaters nationwide on Tuesday, Sept. 28.

Locally, a free screening will take place at 7:30 p.m. at the Landmark Aquarius Theatre, 430 Emerson St. in Palo Alto. The public is invited to attend.

The one-hour film focuses on the work done by activist Betty Makoni, founder of the Girl Child Network in Zimbabwe, which aims to empower and protect young women who were raped based on the false belief that sex with a virgin will cure HIV/AIDS, according to a "Tapestries of Hope" press release.

Ms. Risley filmed the documentary in 2007. As a result of her filming, she was jailed, interrogated, and deported from Zimbabwe. She was freed with the help of the U.S. government and escaped with her film footage. In April of this year, Ms. Risley won Silicon Valley's Women of Influence Award.

The screening is intended to raise awareness of the International Violence Against Women Act and encourage audience members to contact their representatives in Congress to support and fund the legislation, according to the press release.

The screenings are sponsored by a coalition of international organizations, including Something to Talk About, Facebook, and Women Thrive Worldwide. The documentary is being distributed through the Screenvision cinema network.

Go to for more information.


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