1001 Days
1001 Days
1001 Days
1001 Days
1001 Days

1001 Days

Regular price $375.00
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    • Directed by: Kethiwe Ngcobo, Chloe White
    • Released: 2024 (educational)
    • Year of Production: 2023
Running Time: 90 min
Language: English, 
Subtitle Options: English Closed Captions
Subjects:  Women's Studies, African Studies, Women's Studies, Children Family and Youth

In Alexandra, South Africa, where two thirds of the women are abuse survivors, a group of mothers are on a mission to change the fate of their neighbourhood, right from the beginning.

Through a series of intimate, and at times, uncomfortable, conversations, 1001 DAYS takes the audience on a journey. Through the chaotic and narrow streets of Alexandra, we follow the fearless and charismatic health-workers Zanele, Thandiwe and Khosi. They are three mothers from the heart of the community, who doggedly support hundreds of new mothers, during some of their happiest–and lowest–moments. Their aim: to help new mothers during the first 1001 days of their babies' lives, which are the most critical in any human’s life.


The first 1,001 days of a child’s life are critical. During the period from conception to age 2 years the foundations of a baby’s mind are being put in place and early relationships with caregivers during this time can affect the infant’s development in ways that have enduring consequences.

Living in poverty and under chronic stress, as many parents in low- and middle-income countries do, can undermine a caregiver’s ability to provide the sensitive, responsive care that is necessary for optimal child development . However, there is now accumulating evidence that interventions aiming to promote parenting in low- and middle-income countries are effective and lead to benefits to children’s development across a broad range of domains. Lancet series on Child Development have highlighted the need for interventions to include nurturing care, as has the World Health Organisation.

Interventions aiming to promote parenting in low- and middle-income countries have been found to be effective and lead to beneficial outcomes for children. However, they are not widely available and awareness of their benefits is limited.


The Home Visiting programme run by Ububele in Alexandra Township in Johannesburg, South Africa is an example of one such intervention. Ububele is a mother and infant mental health charity and the goal of their intervention is to improve the development potential of the infants who participate, by supporting the mother’s capacity to care for her infant in a way that will best facilitate the baby’s healthy development. Ububele trains local women from the community who are all mothers themselves to be home visitors.  They go from home to home supporting new and expecting mothers in Alexandra, a township which has high levels of unemployment, poverty and HIV. New mums often live alone, thousands of miles from their extended families. 80% of the mums the Home Visitors meet had unplanned pregnancies and 73% report physical or emotional abuse.

Official Selection at 2023 Sheffield Doc Fest, 2023 IDFA Luminous

“A thoroughly engrossing documentary extrapolating personal testimony with sometimes excruciating honesty” – FRAME INDEPENDENT

“The film reflects with moving moments on motherhood in an intimate look that turns children into the axis on which their mothers' survival is sustained.”- MUBI


About the filmmaker 

 Chloe is an award-winning documentary filmmaker based in London. Her short films have screened worldwide at festivals (Sheffield DocFest, Camden International Film Festival) as well as on the Guardian, BBC3, Nowness and Aeon. Chloe is interested in character-led documentaries and has made films on a diverse range of topics- a lobster fisherwomen, female genital mutilation, self-marriage, launderettes, an atomic bomb survivor and elderly transgender women. Chloe runs a production company called Whalebone Films, specialising in films for NGOs (Save the Children, WaterAid, Oxfam). Through this work Chloe has travelled around the world filming in over 25 countries. Chloe has an MA in Documentary Film, she is a MacDowell fellow, and a BFI Doc/Next fellow. She has been awarded the Audience Award at the Imperial War Museum Film Festival for her film An All-Encompassing Light (2014), and the Grand Prize at the International Maritime Film Festival for The Long Haul (2015). 1001 Days will be Chloe’s first feature documentary.

Kethiwe has been in the Film and television industry for 28 years. She runs a production company called Fuzebox and is currently working on a project that is going into its 4th series is a docu-reality format  that is about empowering mainly woman to transform their lives, despite poverty, under education,limited opportunities, gender based violence and self limiting beliefs. She has produced a number of critically acclaimed programmes and series, including a documentary Belonging (2004). Thetha Msawawa  39 eps(2000-2004), which won the UNICEF Best Children’s Drama Award in 2001), Bubomi’ Sana (2004) a youth drama series. She was headhunted to be the first Head of Drama at the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation (SABC). She was key in ensuring that the Sediba development programme was used as a tool by the SABC.  14 Series were produced using this tool and another 12 were developed. This programme along with other development iniatives, such as the Commandments changed the face of fiction production at the SABC and in South Africa generally.  Over 150 people were trained in Televsion script development during her tenure at the SABC. In 2011 and she left the SABC. Since then she has been  creative producer on a low budget Feature film Gog’ Helen ,  Mrs Right Guy, and was released in 2012. In 2013 she produced two TV drama’s for Fuzebox productions,   Thola x 52 eps and Mfolozi  x 39 eps, Its Complicated  x 26 eps & recently creative produced a feature film  Love Lives Here to be released in late 2018.


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