Global Girl Media Uses Filmmaking to Empower ECV Girls

April 3, 2014 /


Coachella Unincorporated reporter Karla Martinez (left) interviewed her mother, Mirna Rodriguez, and grandmother, Maria Flores, for a Global Girl Media video project. Photo: COACHELLA UNINC


Editor’s Note: Coachella Unincorporated reporters Karla Martinez and Maria Garcia participated in Global Girl Media’s spring program, along with other Eastern Coachella Valley girls, at the Boys and Girls Club in Mecca. Sponsored by The California Endowment, the intensive five-day program is part of the “Mother/Madre” project in which young women interview their mothers as a way to build self-esteem, pride, understanding, and bring about healing.

The girls worked on a mini documentary-style video featuring Karla’s mother and grandmother. The video will be finalized this spring and we will share it at that time.

The following are Karla and Maria’s reflections on their Global Girl Media experience.


Karla Martinez: Discovered Strength Through Storytelling

I recently had the honor to attend the Global Girl Media spring program and learn everything that goes into filmmaking. I was able to experiment with camera techniques and editing. The coordinators were encouraging and supportive as I learned the skills I was being taught. The group also included other students, some who had taken the course beforehand and served as mentors. Watching their videos motivated me to begin mine as soon as possible.

I was chosen to tell the story about the women in my life, presenting me with the opportunity to interview the two most important women in my life: my mother and grandmother.

Organizing the interview questions, along with the group, gave me the chance to communicate my family’s experience with everyone. I opened up about the difficulties my mother and grandmother had gone through during their lifetime, and how that has affected me. The women in my family have all had children and married while very young, but I want to take a different path. I realized the strength of a woman can be showed when her story is told on camera. This is an amazing way to emphasize and demonstrate the real feelings and details behind a life.

I have developed an interest to interview and film stories about the people in my community because I now understand the importance of having your voice heard and understood. I am so thankful I had the opportunity to participate in this program, and I would do it again anytime.


Maria Garcia: Met New People and Learned New Skills

I was really excited to participate in this program, but at the same time I was very nervous. Everyone from Global Girl Media was really nice and helpful when we arrived at the Mecca Boys & Girls Club on Monday. I got to meet new people, and I also met another girl who had once gone to my elementary school.

I experienced something I’d never thought I would. Apart from setting up a camera and sound, I learned how to edit and help with translations because there are always different ways and wording it to make the video better. On the day of the actual shooting, I got to experience the many sides of my friend Karla Martinez, who doesn’t show her emotions very much. I’ve seen her laugh, joke around, and act serious — but I had never seen her cry and it was something new to me.

Learning the full story of Karla’s family didn’t shock me because she had told me before, but I was somewhat in awe because of everything that she has gone through with her family.

GGM was a fun experience, and I hope to do participate again someday.


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