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Production   /  In Her Corner

In Her Corner

Follows the triumphs & challenges of Sydney's Muslim female boxers.


Impact areas




  • DIRECTOR Melanie Garrick & Mitchell Grant

  • PRODUCER Melanie Garrick



In Her Corner is an observational documentary that follows three young Muslim women from southwest Sydney as they navigate their connections to family, faith and community, whilst pursuing their dreams of professional boxing.

We follow Malakay, a sole parent of two young boys, who found her way into the ring after her youngest son’s cancer battle, Aida, a passionate youth worker and women’s boxing coach determined to challenge negative perceptions of Islam, and Tina, a make up artist by day and up-and-coming amateur.

We observe the complex push and pull between motherhood, ambition, femininity and toughness in modern Australian society. In Her Corner charts each woman’s triumph and defeat, their families, work, culture and faith. More than a sports
documentary, this film is an inspiring character story about the pursuit of dreams,
defying expectations and our ultimate need for belonging.

Support this project

0% funded
  • $25,000.00

  • $0.00

  • September 2020

  • 0

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Issue Summary

A short summary of the issue the documentary is addressing

Muslim women continue to face social stigma and prejudice in Australian society. Historically, they have also faced barriers to participation in mainstream activities like sport.

Up until March 2019, hijabi women were banned from all international boxing competition. The sport’s garment restrictions meant they were barred from representing their country in the Olympics and the Commonwealth Games.

Breaking through these barriers and challenging preconceptions is a growing movement of Muslim female fighters. These boxers can be found all over the world and are documented on Instagram via @muslimfemalefighters and #muslimfemalefighter.

In Her Corner will uncover this hidden subculture by intersecting the lives
of three Sydney-based Muslim female fighters, each proving that no matter who you are or what your background is, no matter what barrier you face, you can still pursue your dreams.


What is the impact vision statement of the documentary?

Our desire is to produce an authentic, emotionally affecting and inspiring film that will promote greater understanding of cultural and religious differences, shift negative attitudes towards religion and culture and generate greater access and participation for women of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds in society.


What outcomes does the project hope to achieve from making this documentary?

- To elevate the voices, and offer a platform to, a group of women who are not typically represented in mainstream media & who have historically had numerous barriers preventing them for participating in professional sport.
- To generate greater community understanding of the experiences of Muslim women in Australia today and the impact of discrimination and exclusion at an individual level.
- To develop outreach initiatives to promote greater inclusion and access to sport and wellbeing initiatives for culturally and linguistically diverse women.
- To inspire all women to persevere through setbacks to pursue their personal and professional goals.


How will partnerships with this project help inform the project development?


Audience Engagement and Social Impact

What actions does this project hope for its viewers after seeing this film?

- To discover and engage with relevant online communities such as #muslimfemalefighters
- To participate in online discussions about inclusivity and barriers preventing female access and participation.
- For local sporting groups and community organisations to consider the barriers that may be blocking female and or culturally diverse participation in sports, and develop ways to generate safer and more inclusive environments.
- For young women and girls to be inspired to seek out new opportunities to participate in sports or social activities in their communities.

Measurement and Evaluation

What is the projects indicators for success?

Success and impact will be measured on a number of levels including but not limited to:
– Free to air broadcast ratings (including online catch up) within the ABC TV Compass timeslot. Ratings target of 400,000.
- Active digital engagement, inspiring robust online discussions and at least 50,000 page impressions to the website.
– Screenings at least two international film festivals
– At least two mainstream media mentions
– A successful outreach initiative with the film screened to young women and girls in community organisations or schools.