June 07, 2023
New York – June 7, 2023 – Room to Read, a global education nonprofit creating a world free from illiteracy and gender inequality, has announced its newest ambassador: actress, producer and activist Charithra Chandran. The news comes alongside the announcement of Room to Read’s landmark film project, She Creates Change, as an official selection for the 2023 Tribeca X Award, which celebrates the best-in-class projects of the year at the Tribeca Festival.
Chandran is a British Asian actress, producer and activist. She voices the lead role of Keya, a courageous young woman from Bangladesh in She Creates Change, the first nonprofit-led animation and live action film project to promote gender equality through the stories of young women around the world. Room to Read boldly aims to reach all 432 million adolescent girls (ages 12-18) in the world with She Creates Change films, books, audio content and educational curriculum that support them in creating change in their lives and communities.
"Every young woman I’ve ever met has had so much power and potential within them but not all of them have had the opportunity or self-belief to express it,” said Chandran. “I want this project with Room to Read to show young women around the world that we see them, they are not alone and we are all in this together. I hope seeing Keya be the (super)hero of her story, encourages other girls that they are the heroes of their stories too."
Chandran was last seen in the popular Netflix series, “Bridgerton” as Edwina Sharma. She will be next seen in the romantic comedy “How to Date Billy Walsh” for Amazon Prime Video, which will be released globally in summer 2023. Chandran is passionate about girls' education and fighting racial and gender discrimination within the education system and labor market. She will soon begin production on Olivia Hetreed's “Song of the Sun God” series, which retells the history of the Sri Lankan Civil War through the lens of three generations of women. Prior to her acting career, Chandran worked as a policy researcher for the New Policy Institute, analyzing government response and resulting demographic inequalities of the COVID-19 pandemic across Central and Greater London.
On June 8, Chandran will be speaking on a panel moderated by John Ridding, Financial Times CEO and Chair of Room to Read’s Emeritus Board, at a private screening of She Creates Change for Room to Read supporters at the iconic London theater venue, BAFTA 195 Piccadilly.
She Creates Change
The She Creates Change film series of animated shorts with accompanying live action mini documentaries features the narratives of six courageous young women from historically low-income communities in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Vietnam. The series, executive produced by Brenda Chapman, Jill Culton and Freida Pinto, and produced by award-winning entertainment companies Nexus Studios and Moonshine Pictures, portrays how each girl confronts challenges unique to her life — such as harassment, food scarcity or early marriage — along with the life skills she uses to advocate for herself and her future. Emmy-winner Martha Adams serves as series director and producer for the project. Keya’s story, featuring Chandran’s voice, was directed by Bonnie Taylor Forsyth.
As an Official Selection of Tribeca X, She Creates Change will be included in the 2023 Tribeca Festival, specifically the Tribeca X competition in the Series category. Winners will be announced on June 14.
Dr. Geetha Murali, Room to Read CEO said, “To achieve a world free from gender inequality, girls must develop critical life skills and have access to role models who inspire perseverance. Charithra Chandran and the young women supported by Room to Read, including those featured in She Creates Change, are those role models. We are humbled that Tribeca X recognizes the power of these films, and I am proud that Room to Read is delivering women-centered storytelling and the associated curriculum to make life skills more understandable and attainable for all adolescent girls.”