26 October 2021 The Irish Film & Television Network
Documentary ‘Jaha’s Promise’ Challenges Female Genital Mutilation & Child Marriage #FilmFleadh
12 Jul 2017 : Katie McNeice
Still, 'Jaha's Promise'
Documentary is becoming one of the largest growing outputs in Ireland, as seen from the number of factual projects hitting the big screen at home and abroad.

One of the latest titles come up the ranks this year is ‘Jaha’s Promise’, a feature length exploration of female mutilation through the eyes of a Gambian campaigner as she revisits her homeland to confront the tradition which has affected over two hundred million women and young girls worldwide.

It screens tomorrow, Thursday July 13th at 14:00 in the Town Hall Theatre. Farrelly co-directs and co-produces the Accidental Pictures production with Kate O’Callaghan. The project is edited by Sinead Kissane with cinematography from Kate McCullough.

As seen in the trailer below, Jaha challenges locals on their beliefs in the old myths informing the tradition, as the production team capture responses. In the course of the documentary she becomes engaged in dialogue on the subject with the United Nations, as putting a stop to female genital mutilation begins to become recognised as a global responsibility.

Patrick Farrelly, Co-Director/Co-Producer:
“‘Jaha’s Promise’ began over three years ago when a young woman, Jaha Dukureh told me she was going back to west Africa to try to end the practices — female genital mutilation and child marriage — that almost destroyed her life. That was the story we set out to tell.

“Making the feature documentary with my co-director/producer, Kate O’Callaghan has been a logistically difficult but very rewarding experience. The fact that Jaha is an extraordinary person who exposed her often painful life experiences to us and allowed us into her family and community made the journey a really compelling one.

“We were greatly helped by collaborating with very talented and committed people like our director of photography, Kate McCullough and our editor Sinead Kinnane.

“Taking the film to the Galway Film Fleadh is a great experience for us both because it’s a great festival and also because we get to screen it for a lot of people who have influenced and supported us over the years. Because we’re now based in New York it’s also a great way to catch up with the new work of Irish film makers.

“In the future our next big challenge is to work with advocates like the Global Media Campaign and the Human Dignity Foundation and others to bring this film to countries in Africa and elsewhere where practices like FGM and child marriage are ruining the lives of millions of girls every year.“

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