Thursday, August 12, 2010

Anji Loman Field: Making a drama out of a crisis

Anji Loman Field's article on making a film in Cambodia to promote family planning, first published in The Guild's magazine UK Writer, is now available on our website.
In September 2009, InDevelopment Productions, which I set up last year, was commissioned by a British NGO based in Phnom Penh to make an hour-long drama aimed at encouraging Cambodian women to plan their families more effectively and to seek family-planning advice from reputable, responsible medical practitioners. The film also seeks to discourage women from seeking back-street abortions. Early abortion is legal here, but it’s not widely promoted and a lot of women look for help outside the (woefully inadequate) system. There are horror stories involving the use of a sharp stick to bring on spontaneous miscarriage, pouring acid into the woman’s vagina or simply giving her dodgy tablets that do not complete the job, leading to dangerous complications. Due to the understandable problems with reporting methods here there are no statistics at all for the numbers of deaths caused by backstreet and DIY abortions, but they are likely to be high.

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