FRANK Water - Sangita's Story
Since 2005, FRANK Water has funded safe drinking water and sanitation for nearly 390,000 people in 442 communities.
FRANK Water came to Omni to produce a film that demonstrated the impact access to clean water and sanitation has on rural communities in India.
Our brief was simple - no talking heads, produce an emotive piece that avoided cliches and be respectful of the community FRANK Water work with.
Our aim was to tell a story that required no dialogue, a film that helps capture both life before and after the community has access to clean water and sanitation, and demonstrate the knock on effect this has on freeing up girls to be able go to school.
The first half of the film follows our subject, ‘Sangita’, on her journey to the collect dirty water, showing the times she is put at risk and how time spent over and over on this journey limits her development on a number of levels - building a sense of repetition through the shoot and edit.
One morning something changes - ‘Sangita’ gets up but instead of making the familiar journey; she’s going to school, she is meeting friends, she’s spending time with her sister’s and she’s on her way to being an engineer. In the second half of the story we matched the same sequence of angles and shot types but this time with a positive outcome - the only difference being that she now has access to clean water and sanitation.
Although this is an intimate portrait of an individual, we had to ensure that the message reflected the wider issues. The message being that this isn’t just going to happen if we do nothing, but it can be as simple as this if FRANK water are able to keep developing local partnerships and developing water projects.
Our fixer in Warangal knew the communities well that FRANK Water worked with and proceeded to see if they could find girl who would be interested in playing our lead. We received audition footage from several girls from the ideal village and Kavitha was a stand-out favourite with everyone - her personality and attitude simply leapt off the screen.
With a crew of two (Darren Finch Director/Producer & Tim Fok Cinematography) and a tiny budget, we flew out to India for 10 days and spent 5 x consecutive 15 hour shoot days with Kavitha, her family and her amazing community to produce a film that we are all incredibly proud of.