PARK CITY, UT – January 19, 2018: From director Derek Doneen and producers Davis Guggenheim and Sarah Anthony,“Kailash”, a feature-length documentary, on the life and work of Nobel Peace Laureate, Kailash Satyarthi, opened the Sundance Film Festival on Thursday night to a widely enthusiastic audience response. The film—produced by Participant Mediaand Concordia Studio—captures the tireless efforts of Kailash and his team as they carry out raids to rescue and rehabilitate trafficked and enslaved children.
Using a combination of archived and new footage, “Kailash” captures a slice of the 37 years of tireless work that Mr. Satyarthi and his colleagues have undertaken to rescue more than 80,000 children from child and slave labor. The film highlights his organization’s efforts to rehabilitate, educate and re-unify children with their families in an overall mission to break the cycle of poverty and abuse.
The film’s premiere coincided with the 20th anniversary of the launch of the Global March Against Child Labor, which resulted in the International Labor Organization’s adoption of Convention 182 on the worst forms of child labor, outlawing child trafficking and slavery. Founded by Mr. Satyarthi, the Global March Against Child Labor brought together a worldwide coalition of children’s rights organizations, as well as trade and teachers’ unions to form the single largest civil society network advocating for the rights of the most exploited children.
Commenting on the film, Kailash Satyarthi stated, “Slavery is an assault on humanity. There is no excuse for the exploitation of millions of children to produce wealth at the cost of their childhood and freedom, especially in this day and age. I have never left any stone unturned in this fight, therefore I call upon the power of audiences at Sundance to join me and amplify the message against child trafficking and slavery that we must end in our lifetime. This is the place, today is the time and you are the people.”
The United Nations has made child labor a priority calling for its complete eradication by 2025 in the UN Sustainable Development Goals. There are currently 152 million child laborers around the world, of which over 4 million are trapped in slavery.Each year more than 1.2 million children are trafficked into forced labor, including work in the sex trade.
Inspired by the many children he has met and worked for in his life, Mr. Satyarthi recently founded the 100 Million Campaign. The Campaign aims to inspire and mobilize young people to stand up and act for their own rights and the rights of their peers, and to achieve the world’s biggest youth mobilization to end violence against children, eradicate child labor and ensure education. By acting for themselves and with the support of experienced activists worldwide, the 100 Million Campaign aims to break the cycles of illiteracy, poverty and violence so that every young person in the world has the chance to fulfill their potential. The Campaign recently organized a 12,000 km-long march in India—the Bharat Yatra—that mobilized over 40 million children and youth to come together against child trafficking and sexual abuse.
Tied to the release of the film, Participant, dedicated to entertainment that inspires and compels social change, will launch aglobal social impact campaign thatbuilds upon Mr. Satyarthi’s efforts to ensure that all children are free, safe and educated. In partnership with the Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation (KSCF), the film’s campaign will empower youth, private sector leaders and policymakers to end child labor through increasing consumer awareness, demandingsupply chain transparency, and advocating for child-friendly legislation, community by community.
About the Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation
The Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation (KSCF) envisions a world where all children are free, safe, healthy, in school, and have the opportunity to realize her/his potential. Our mission is to end slavery and child labor and ultimately end violence against children. To make this a reality, we are scaling Mr. Satyarthi’s 37 years of work at both the grassroots and global policy level. His lessons learned guide the Foundation’s work to engage children and youth as part of the solution, build greater collaboration between governments, business and communities, ensure effective national and international laws, scale know-how and successful practice and create partnerships with key stakeholders.