What do you long for? Where do you belong? A group of teenagers trafficked illegally into the UK rebuild their lives.
In this short 35mm film, a group of African teenagers trafficked illegally into the UK overcome desperate situations and build new lives for themselves in London. Now in college, fluent in English, with dreams of going to university, the girls face deportation on their 18th birthdays under current Home Office rules for unaccompanied minors. This film asks them what they long for and where they feel they belong.
(be)longing was commissioned by The Women’s Library in London, for an exhibition on prostitution to mark the centenary of the death of Josephine Butler, the Victorian social reformer and campaigner for the rights of prostituted women. In 2007 (be)longing was launched at the Genesis Cinema in London, where members of the Home Office and some prominent MPs attended the premiere and met the women in the film. All of the young women who appear in the film were granted permanent leave to live and work in the UK, and some were brought in as immigration and asylum consultants to the Home Office. The visibility of the project had some direct, positive outcomes in line with the longings and sense of belonging expressed by the women. Produced and managed by Artsadmin. Associate Producer Emmy Minton.