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Movie premiere of 'Hush 2 End the Silence'

Published:Saturday | February 20, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Year upon year, the statistics on violence against children get more and more alarming. In 2006, statistics compiled revealed that more than 1,700 children were victims of major crimes, including rape, committed in Jamaica during that year alone.

The United Nations estimates - and local researchers concur - that only about one in 10 sexual offences, such as rape, is reported. Social stigma and the fear of reprisals are just two of many reasons children do not report these crimes.

Hush 2 End the Silence
is a Barbadian film which deals with the issues of sexual abuse, drugs and violence inflicted on youth. It also looks at how youth deal with these issues and encourages them to end the silence and seek healing.

The Students Christian Fellowship and Scripture Union (SCFSU), in partnership with Step by Step Productions, a Barbadian film and production company, will premiere the movie on February 23 at Palace Cineplex.

Barbadian film

The movie was written by Marcia Weekes, filmed in Barbados and is a sequel to
Hush 1

The movie premiered in Barbados and was shown in the cinema every day for eight consecutive weeks. Twenty-one out of 22 Barbadian high schools were transported to the cinema and, overall, more than 20,000 persons in Barbados have seen the movie.

Response to the film was overwhelming, as it encouraged youths with similar issues to break the silence and seek help. Step by Step worked with the schools' guidance counsellors to provide support to students who needed it after watching the movie. They further hosted weekend retreats for the students. The SCFSU and a coalition of partners will seek to provide similar support for the Jamaican leg.

The Jamaica Broilers Group and the NCB Foundation have also come on-board to sponsor the premiere.