Alice was 11 years old when she was raped on her way to school. The police promised to make an arrest, but only if Alice’s stepmother paid them. Her perpetrator went free.

In Kenya, one in three girls will experience sexual violence before age 18, yet police investigations are the exception. But 160 girls from Tumaini Shelter for young rape survivors, including Alice, banded together to sue the Kenyan government, setting a legal precedent for child protection worldwide.

With the help of a multinational team led by Canadian lawyer Fiona Sampson and Tumaini Shelter head Mercy Chidi Baidoo, these young girls pursued an unheard of legal tactic: force the Kenyan government to uphold its newly ratified and highly praised constitution and to protect girls.

In The Girls of Meru, filmmaker Andrea Dorfman tells the story of the Tumaini children, whose identity is court-protected, through stirring glimpses of faces, hands and feet, arresting animation, and tiny voices growing strong in their pursuit of meaningful equality.