Son Rise

Vibha Bakshi

Project: Son Rise

Deep-rooted patriarchal practices have resulted in an almost complete absence of girls in many villages in Haryana, the state bordering India’s capital, New Delhi. “Son Rise,” the groundbreaking documentary directed and produced by award-winning filmmaker Vibha Bakshi, focuses on the issues of gender injustice and violence — and uncovers unlikely male gender rights heroes who are fighting to change the narrative on gender inequality. We transformed the film into a youth movement to challenge the age-old male dominance and promote equality.

01The challenge

Making men and boys an integral part of the movement for a more equitable and safer world.

02The solution

Through powerful omnichannel engagements, we mounted mass screenings, events and dialogues in schools and universities across India. Focusing on boys and men — ages 15 to 30 — to bring about a generational change in mindset, we propelled a nationwide movement among young people.

Uniting to end gender bias


The global campaign led to over a million male students signing up for the global HeForShe pledge, a UN Women initiative for men to stand in solidarity with women to create a bold, visible and united force for gender equality.


Our efforts contributed to the “Son Rise” hero becoming part of the Indian public school curriculum. Many schools make the film a mandatory watch for students, evoking the power to influence tens of millions of students in the years to come.

03The impact

Igniting a movement

Diplomats from 50 nations took a pledge at the Expo 2020 Dubai film screening, rallying the youth to stand up against gender-based violence in their respective countries. The United Nations Academic Impact has selected “Son Rise” to promote human rights through higher education with a reach of 1,400 universities across 147 countries, covering 25M people.

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