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After they graduated from Missouri State University in 2010, world travelers Tammi Presley and Tiffany Butler moved to Clearwater, Florida and started a travel blog with another friend called 3GirlsAndAMap.com. In the last few months, they’ve also been working to promote the award-winning, independent film Girls Rising, which brings awareness to education for young girls. KSMU’s Rebekah Clark has their story.
When they’re not touring a remote country, Presley and Butler spend a few weeks working and saving money for their next trip. Lately, they’ve also used that down time to petition for their limited release film to play in Springfield.
Tiffany: “The film spotlights about nine girls, I believe, and their stories are basically about their fight for education. One of the great things the film does is they actually got native speakers and writers to follow each girl to help tell their story.
Tammi: “It went from just as simple as their not allowed to go to school to as extreme as their basically slaves and something as simple as speaking your mind can get you killed.”
Originally, Presley and Butler created a blog, then called 2 Girls and a Map, to keep up with their friends in Springfield after the pair decided to move to the beach. Prior to that, they met and worked for KSPR News during their college years.
Upon moving to Florida, the two met their third companion and travel buddy, Michelle Hudson, and together they travel the world. Their website and blog offers tips to other travelers on the best and most cost efficient ways to tour the globe, opportunities to volunteer around the world, and updates on their latest adventures.
In the film Girls Rising, the nine girls featured are each from different third-world countries that don’t have a formal education platform for females. These countries include Cambodia, Afghanistan, Egypt, Peru, Nepal, India, Ethiopia, Haiti and the small West African country Sierra Leone. The film documents these girls as they thirst, strive and fight for an education.
[nat: ten seconds of the preview of the film].
“After we saw it, we emailed one of the producers to be a featured guest [on their blog] to help with the cause. We noticed they were partnering with GATHR, which is a platform where we can come in and help get the screening to your hometown, which is a really great platform.”
The film unveiled at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, and includes the voice talents of Anne Hathaway, Selena Gomez, Cate Blanchett and Liam Neeson.
Presley and Butler partnered with GATHR and are pushing to show the movie in Springfield and spread awareness about the issue as a whole. The film is scheduled for viewing at 7:30 p.m. on June 6 at Campbell 16 Cinema. However, it will not be shown if the screening fails to receive 100 tickets reservations. So far, the friends say they haven’t met that minimum requirement, and the deadline is next week.
“Some of these bigger [independent] films, you see them in L.A. and New York and that’s about it. You don’t get things in Florida or Missouri or different places, you get them in the main areas. We wanted to have the chance to spread the word a little bit and help out and get it to Springfield, so that way our friends and family could see it.”
The friends say that globally 66 million girls are out of school. They say they will use any platform they can to try and lower that number.
For KSMU News, I’m Rebekah Clark.