Last week, there Team Brazil champions Drika and Jessica attended the World Premiere of Street Kids United II – The Girls From Rio. A feature-length documentary following their incredible journey from the favelas to champions of the world – winning the 2014 Street Child World Cup.
The film, executive produced by Academy Award Nominee Stephen Daldry and directed by Maria Clara, premiered at the 62nd Pula Film Festival in Croatia. Jessica and Drika were accompanied by Street Child United and the film’s producers, Mike Downey (F&ME), Jamillah Van Der Hulst and Conrad Alleblas (JaJa Film Productions).
The girls enjoyed full VIP treatment in preparing for their premiere, including invited as guests of honour at a screening in the Pula amphitheatre, a guided tour of the city, a lunch with fellow festival-selectees, relaxing at their hotel pool, professional make-up and a visit to the Street Child World Cup exhibition.
Street Kids United II premiered on the Wednesday evening of the festival as part of the Youth Dizalica programme at the Sacred Hearts open-air theatre in the heart of the city.
Mike Downey introduced the girls as they joined an audience of 200 people to watch the film for the first time. Jessica said her favourite moment was when the film started,
“I was so excited. There was a real build up about watching the film.”
“The film was beautifully done and emotional.”
“I felt like I was a Hollywood actress. I felt really excited to see the people were enjoying the film. I felt very pleased to see how the people reacting to the film.“
Team Brazil Captain, Drika hoped that audiences would better understand the challenging facing children at risk of the streets in Brazil, she said,
“It was interesting for me to see that people realise our life in Brazil is different from their life. Our life in Brazil is much more violent, and much more complicated.
But we can still be happy and still fight for our dreams despite our difficulties.“
Producer, Jamillah Van Der Hulst said,
”It was amazing to see the wonderful response of the audience after the screening of Street Kids United II. It was great to see the two Favela Street Girls, Drika and Jessica, on the stage representing street children all over the world.”
Film and Music Entertainment boss Mike Downey said,
“The Street Kids United series of films goes from strength to strength, and with the launch of part II – The Girls From Rio the message of the plight of street children will be spread worldwide via the films dissemination through festivals and international broadcast. The third part of the series is already in prep for the Street Child Games in Rio in 2016.”
Re-living her Street Child World Cup experience stirred Drika’s feelings,
“It was emotional to see the people crying so I cried as well. I was thinking about my own past life.
The Street Child World Cup was the best 10 days of my life, they have changed my life.”
Drika and Jessica continue to inspire young people in their community as Favela Street Girls coaches and are both currently studying English for ten weeks at the Studio Cambridge English Language School as part of the inaugural Street Child United Cambridge Ambassadors Programme.
Stay posted for more news on where you can see Street Kids United II – The Girls From Rio.
“It was a privilege to be invited to the launch of the Street Child World Cup at Downing Street. It gives children a voice through football, sales a platform to express their rights and celebrate their abilities – I’m proud to add my support.”
“I experienced hardcore street life in my youth. I know what it’s like. I congratulate the Street Child World Cup project in it’s commitment to bring attention to the plight of Street Children through the power of football.”
“No child should have to live on the streets. I commend the Street Child World Cup for providing a platform for the rights of street children to be heard.”