In the summer of 2015 Street Teams approached Derecho Studios to work on a resource to tackle Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE). They shared a mutual passion to explore a proactive approach, looking to change the environment that enables CSE; to prevent it rather than just react to it.
Over the next 6 months they worked on a script for a film that would emphasise that everyone within communities must take responsibility for tackling CSE. The concept was clear: if you shocked people by showing them what their small actions could lead to, it would cause them to change. The script showed the true impact of CSE and the collective offence that we all commit by not saying anything or speaking up when we have the chance.
With the original script written and signed off, everything was ready to go. And yet, the films on this website aren’t the film they originally planned to make. Benjamin Poffley (Director at Derecho Studios) describes it in this way:
“Even as we were writing the script, I felt the heaviness of the victims and the perpetrators. I thought about watching the film once it was made, and I realised that I wouldn’t actually want to sit through it! Instead of feeling that I wanted to make a change and end CSE, I just felt dissapointed. I started to think – there must be a way to encourage people to make a change through equipping and empowering them rather than through shock and guilt tactics.”
The next week Derecho Studios and Street Teams met to discuss a very different set of 6 films!
Rather than focussing on the ‘problem’, the new films would focus on possible solutions to that problem. They would show examples of people choosing to make the right choice when faced with situations that could lead to CSE. That choice wouldn’t be easy; it wouldn’t be the perfect solution… but it would be a real example of the challenges there are to dealing with this issue.
The key aims of the films would be to equip people and give them sight of the future that we all want to create. Instead of using fear to motivate people they would show them the power of choice.
Choose To End It
We hope these films will be the beginnings of new thoughts; the catalyst for bold choices and the start of shared conversations.
We believe that through seeing things differently and sharing ideas collectively, together we can end Child Sexual Exploitation.