• Women and girls across the globe face threats — trafficking, prostitution, violence, discrimination — every day of their lives. But hope endures....

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  • Watch the film trailer, behind-the-scenes videos, and exclusive interviews with celebrity advocates and world leaders.

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  • It was a journey that started a movement that's now changing the lives of women and girls around the world. Discover how you can get involved.

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Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into

Opportunity for Women Worldwide

A special presentation of Independent Lens

A landmark transmedia project featuring a four-hour PBS primetime national and international broadcast event (check local listings), a Facebook-hosted social action game, mobile games, two websites, educational video modules with companion text, a social media campaign supporting over 30 partner NGOs, and an impact assessment plan all inspired by Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, the widely acclaimed book by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn.

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide was filmed in 10 countries and follows Kristof, WuDunn, and celebrity activists America Ferrera, Diane Lane, Eva Mendes, Meg Ryan, Gabrielle Union, and Olivia Wilde on a journey to tell the stories of inspiring, courageous individuals. Across the globe oppression is being confronted, and real meaningful solutions are being fashioned through health care, education, and economic empowerment for women and girls. The linked problems of sex trafficking and forced prostitution, gender-based violence, and maternal mortality — which needlessly claim one woman every 90 seconds — present to us the single most vital opportunity of our time: the opportunity to make a change. All over the world women are seizing this opportunity.


Gender-Based Violence

Gender makes women vulnerable to violence

The victimization of women and girls is one of the most common, yet least visible forms of oppression. Its effects go beyond the bruises and the fear to tear at the very fabric that holds families and communities together.


Eva Mendes

Eva examines domestic violence in Sierra Leone

The star of Hitch and We Own the Night traveled with Nicholas Kristof to Sierra Leone to visit Amie Kandeh and the International Rescue Committee.


The Authors


Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn

New York Times reporters and Pulitzer Prize winners Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn guide readers on an odyssey through Africa and Asia to meet the extraordinary women struggling there.


The Filmmakers


Read the bios of the team behind the program

A team of veteran filmmakers collaborated to create to bring the stories and ideas of Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn's best-selling book to public television audiences nationwide.


Presented by ITVS, funded by Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people, with additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional program funding provided by the Ikea Foundation, US Agency for International Development (USAID) (in partnership with FHI-360 and C-Change), Goldman Sachs 10,000 Women, the Ford Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Coca-Cola Foundation, the NoVo Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation, the Seedling Foundation, the Nike Foundation, the United Nations Foundation.;

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide is not in any way affiliated with or in partnership with the Half the Sky Foundation, a nonprofit organization created in 1998 to enrich the lives and enhance the prospects for orphaned children in China. For more information about the Half the Sky Foundation, visit halfthesky.org.