Monday, July 20, 2009

Rough Aunties

The Rough Aunties in this documentary are certainly a bunch of women I would want on my side if I were an abused kid. They care about the kids and they are tough when it comes to getting things done. Whether it is chasing up the police, social services and the courts on the phone or in person to get things done or get cock-ups fixed up, or comforting a terrified child or coaxing a traumatic story from a child to provide the police with evidence they are kind, confident and relentless.

The Rough Aunties are 5 women from the BobbiBear organisation in Durban, South Africa. In a country where the police, courts, social and medical services are insufficient and the cultures (both black and white) are extremely male oriented abused children are at the bottom of the heap and there is a desperate need for organisations like BobbiBear and women like these.

The documentary follows the women around as they work with police on child abuse cases, including doing the interviews, taking the kids to identify the suspects, making sure that the police enforce restrictions on how close abusers can get to their victims. Picking up abandoned babies, and also dealing with the problems in their own lives. An eight year old son of one of the women drowns during the film and women clean up up the blood after a burglary shooting of a relative of another of the women.

The film is a powerful mixture of awful crimes and these dedicated "Rough Aunties".

Ian's rating 4/5

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