Private Project

She Creates Change: Diksha

She Creates Change tells the true story of young Diksha from Nepal who overcame discrimination and went on to challenge unjust traditions in her community. She Creates Change film series was created for Room to Read NGO, will be released in October 2023 to commemorate International Day of the Girl, aims to reach all 432 million adolescent girls globally with content and educational curriculum that supports them in creating change in their communities.

  • Neeraja Raj
  • Neeraja Raj
  • Project Type:
    Animation, Documentary, Short
  • Genres:
    Drama, Fantasy, Documentary
  • Runtime:
    3 minutes 30 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    October 8, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    150,000 GBP
  • Country of Origin:
    United Kingdom
  • Country of Filming:
    United Kingdom
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Neeraja Raj

Talented film director Neeraja Raj has demonstrated a rare and unique ability to create worlds from very little. Her acclaimed 2020 animation film 'Meow or Never' was shortlisted for the 'BAFTA Awards', won the 'Young Director Award', and the international 'Women in Animation' Best Film Award. Her films have been officially featured in several Oscar®-Qualifying festivals: Cleveland International Film Festival, Austin Film Festival, Chicago International Children’s Film Festival, Sitges Film Festival, and more. She was recently awarded the Global Talent Visa (by the United Kingdom) and the Cultural Golden Visa (by Dubai and the United Arab Emirates), as she has been recognized as an Exceptional Talent Industry Leader, by both countries. She has most recently been featured in Variety magazine’s 'Top 10 Animators to Watch, 2022' list and is a 'Forbes 30 Under 30' honoree of 2023.

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Director Statement

Having grown up in a multitude of counties, from Indonesia to the United Arab Emirates to India, my formative years were spent in many different schools, perpetually the ‘new kid’, constantly adapting to change. I believe that the every-shifting backdrop of my youth has opened my mind from a very young age to a smorgasbord of ideas. Knowing people from all walks of life has helped me create an open-minded view of the world, always welcoming of new concepts and thoughts. And so, I am constantly creating, conjuring up stories out of incidents, people, and more. Art and filmmaking were my guiding lights and where I found solace.

I was most inclined to tell Diksha's tale because it so closely mirrored my own experiences of growing up somewhere my skin was alien, and therefore, othered. I was darker than all of my Indonesian classmates in primary school, and I remember instances of bullying and micro-aggressions due to this very fact. Many Indian girls face this caste-based and color-based discrimination even today; this is not just Diksha's tale, but mine, and so many other little kids who feel lost.

I hope to empower young girls through Diksha's story, taking them through the narrative of how she took control of her own agency. There is potential in each one of us. Sometimes, a film is all it takes to open one's eyes to their unlocked power.