U.S. Embassy announces “HerStory” Video Challenge winners in Commemoration of Women’s History Month

Ambassador Patricia Haslach with the three winners and the panel of judges.
Ambassador Patricia Haslach with the three winners and the panel of judges.

Addis Ababa, March 30, 2015: As part of the month-long Women’s History Month celebration, U.S. Ambassador Patricia M. Haslach announced the winners of the “HerStory” short video challenge, sponsored by the U.S. Embassy, during a reception on March 29 that marked the culmination of events honoring women and addressing the challenges that women face around the world.

The U.S. Embassy launched the “HerStory” video challenge and invited interested participants, both men and women, to submit a three-minute film about women and girls’ issues in an Ethiopian context. Out of the 190 entries the Embassy received, three were selected as winners and awarded prizes from ETB 80,000, 40,000, and 20,000 the first to third places, respectively. Hannibal Abera (Sira Yelatim/ She doesn’t work), Yanit Brhanu (Alem, it is just a name), and Frezer Feseha (Erita/Scream) won 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places respectively.

In her remarks Ambassador Patricia Haslach said, “Through our HerStory video challenge, we asked you to address women’s issues in Ethiopia, and we were impressed by the very serious topics addressed in all 190 films. While each film was unique, the common denominator was that women and girls in Ethiopia still face extreme challenges, most of which are shared by women around the world,” adding, “It is not a cliché when I say that all 190 movies you made were winners because we saw how you applied your energy, artistry and skills to tell these very important stories in a creative and impactful way.”

Most of the HerStory short films depict the challenges of access to education for girls, gender-based violence, the burden of domestic work, abuse from partners, family members and others, but also showcased women and girls overcoming challenges and achieving in their careers and family life.

The three top winners were picked by a panel of expert judges, including three professional filmmakers, Azeb Worku, a renowned script writer and producer, Zelalem Weldemariam from Zeleman Production, and Tewodros Teshome from Teddy Studio.