Inspiring UNF-GACC documentary “BLACK INSIDE: Three Women’s Voices" Wins Grand Prix Award at the Deauville Green Awards 2013, Normandy France

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United Nations Foundation film champions clean cooking solutions to protect women and the environment from deadly household air pollution. Director Rodney Rascona accepts the award for Best Corporate Film, commissioned by UNF’s Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves.

"A Clean Cookstove Can Change Everything"

BLACK INSIDE "A Clean Cookstove Can Change Everything"

The death toll is staggering: four million lives lost worldwide to HAP every year - double previous estimates (The British Lancet Dec 2012)

“BLACK INSIDE: Three Women’s Voices” was awarded the coveted Grand Prix for Best Corporate Film at the Deauville Green Awards. The international festival celebrates the best of corporate and television films with themes promoting preservation of the environment and sustainable development. Held 16-18 April, 2013, in Deauville, France, the juried competition attracted more than 200 entries from over 20 countries. Presenting the award was Solange Montillaud-Joyel, in charge of information within the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in Paris. (

One of just five Grand Prix winners, “BLACK INSIDE: Three Women’s Voices” was commissioned by the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves. The Alliance is a public-private partnership launched in 2010 by former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and led by the United Nations Foundation. The twelve-minute documentary lends an intimate perspective to an urgent global public health and environmental threat.

Nearly three billion people still cook over an open fire, yet this age-old method of cooking ranks as the planet’s fourth largest killer. Chronic exposure to toxic smoke from solid fuels, or household air pollution (HAP), affects entire families. The death toll is staggering: four million lives lost worldwide to HAP every year – double previous estimates, according to results of the Global Burden of Disease 2010 study, published 13 Dec., 2012, in The Lancet. (

In “BLACK INSIDE: Three Women’s Voices,” director Rodney Rascona points to a simple, low-cost solution – substituting clean cookstoves for traditional cooking methods – that can save lives as well as conserve vital natural resources. The filmmakers journeyed to remote areas on three continents to document captivating vignettes of a trio of strong, resilient women. Despite geographical and cultural differences, Sarah, Vandana and Monica belong to a vast sisterhood whose uniquely personal stories mirror epic global issues: HAP as well as poverty, women’s and children’s health, deforestation, carbon emissions and sustainable change.

Each speaks eloquently on behalf of the millions more who would benefit from the life-saving, clean cooking devices. “The old stoves, they make this world black. They also make us black inside,” says Sarah, a Gabra tribeswoman in Kenya's northern deserts. With newfound hope for their families’ health and future, and more time and money to spend, the women become inspired change agents in their communities – starting businesses, investing in the lives of others, and giving more of themselves to their children.

Joining Rascona in the project were writer Russ Haan, director of photography Scott Shepard and gaffer Chuck Linkes. London-based producer Phil Tidy of Urchin Productions brought together a post-production team that included film editor Warren Meneely, Goldcrest Post London and Prime Focus London. In-country ground logistics were provided by The Paradigm Project, GIZ Peru, Food for the Hungry Kenya, and The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI). You can find a complete list of global partners, as well as a Director’s Statement, at the film’s website. (

Launched in 2011, the Deauville Green Awards—also known as the International Festival of Corporate Film and TV on Ecology and Sustainable Development—take place each year in the historic seaside resort of Deauville, France. In addition to screenings of the finalists’ films, festivities include three days of networking, debates and conferences on green issues. Chaired by Georges Pessis (Acting General), Jean-Charles Pentecouteau (President) and François Morgant (Vice-President), a prestigious jury comprised of audiovisual communications professionals and specialists in environmental policy and sustainable development, presents Gold awards to the best productions in 12 categories as well as recognising a select number of films with Grand Prix awards for superior cinematic achievement. ([

Award-winning photographer/director Rodney Rascona has utilised his more than three decades of professional experience to help raise revenue and awareness for relief and development organizations around the globe. In addition to his charitable projects, Rascona continues to produce leading work for an international roster of advertising clients. Rascona was named 2010 International Photographer of the Year: Deeper Perspective by the Lucie Foundation for “The Pink Door Photographs,” a poignant collection of iconic portraits featuring earthquake survivors in Haiti.(

Rascona’s team is currently in pre-production on a feature-length documentary about the burgeoning cookstove movement. “BLACK INSIDE” will lay out the arguments, the issues and the solutions presented by the brilliant minds engaged in this social imperative.

*For more information about Rodney Rascona, please visit
*For US assignments contact: Rodney Rascona - director(at)blackinside-thefilm(dot)com
*For UK/EU assignments contact: Phil Tidy - producer(at)blackinside-thefilm(dot)com

The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves is a public-private partnership led by the United Nations Foundation to save lives, improve livelihoods, empower women, and preserve the environment by creating a thriving global market for clean and efficient household cooking solutions. The Alliance’s ‘100 by 20’ goal calls for 100 million homes to adopt clean and efficient cookstoves and fuels by 2020. The Alliance is working with its hundreds of public, private, and non-profit partners to help overcome the market barriers that currently impede the production, deployment, and use of clean cookstoves and fuels in developing countries. Learn more at

*For more information contact - Sean Bartlett/Director of Communications: sbartlett(at)unfoundation(dot)org

Igniting Change Report - A Strategy for the Universal Adoption of Clean Cookstoves and Fuels: (


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