In this eight-episode podcast series, travel the globe to meet women and girls taking a stand against gender injustice – and saving lives along the way. Join host Beth Murphy for intimate conversations with these hidden heroes of the COVID-19 pandemic. Each episode is followed by a “deep dive” companion piece, in which experts in equality and public health help us better understand the forces driving harmful practices, violence and other rights violations worldwide.
Supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Episode 8 (Deep Dive): In Community We Trust
In this companion piece to “Feed the People” (Episode 7), Dr. Joia Mukherjee, Chief Medical Officer for Partners In Health, explains why community advocates are crucial for reaching people most in need with life-saving health care and services.
Episode 7: Feed the People
In one of the communities hit hardest by COVID-19 in the United States, Gladys Vega knows what her neighbours need to recover: food. Her grassroot efforts to feed Chelsea, Massachusetts, underscore the deadly racial inequalities exposed by the pandemic.
Episode 6 (Deep Dive): The Education Crisis
UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore discusses how women and girls are denied education in many parts of the world, in this sister piece to “Daring to Dream” (Episode 5). She also explains the importance of closing the “digital divide” to give children everywhere an equal opportunity to succeed.
Episode 5: Daring to Dream
Before the Taliban took control of Afghanistan in the summer of 2021, an all-girls robotics team drew accolades the world over for overcoming obstacles to compete on an international stage too often reserved for boys. Now, the Afghan Dreamers have been forced to flee to safety, with support from Beth and the Hidden Heroes team, leaving their once-promising futures in question.
Episode 4 (Deep Dive): The Unrecognized Abuse
In this companion piece to “Secret Recipes” (Episode 3), we talk to Mary Ellsberg, Director of the Global Women’s Institute at George Washington University, about the most pervasive and under-reported human rights violation in the world: violence against women and girls.
Episode 3: Secret Recipes
As cases of intimate partner violence surge, an all-female hackathon team in Ecuador devises an ingenious way to reach women and girls at risk, while avoiding the watchful eye of abusers: a cookbook.
Episode 2 (Deep Dive): Listen to the Women
Mendy Marsh, Co-Founder and Executive Director of VOICE, has a disruptive idea for the humanitarian response to crisis: Listen to women. In this sister episode to "Child Bride Combats Child Marriage” (Episode 1), we dive deeper into the implications of child marriage.
Episode 1: Child Bride Combats Child Marriage
Faridah was a child bride in the Congo before making a harrowing escape to Uganda. Now, as the COVID-19 pandemic puts more girls at risk of marrying before their eighteenth birthday, she’s doing everything she can to stop the harmful practice.
Search for Hidden Heroes on Amazon, Apple, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever you listen to your podcasts, and subscribe to hear it first.
Behind the scenes
Episode 7. Gladys Vega (right), Executive Director of the Chelsea Collaborative, helps coordinate food deliveries for families in need in Massachusetts, United States, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Episode 7. Gladys (right) and a volunteer deliver food to a family suffering the health and financial hardships of COVID-19.
Episode 5. Somaya Faruqi, of the Afghan Dreamers, showcases one of her team's inventions: a low-cost ventilator made from used, spare auto parts to treat COVID-19 patients. Read more about the girls' robotics team that rose to international fame.
Episode 3. Daniela Peralvo (right) works with IMPAQTO, which helped organize a hackathon to address gender-based violence in Latin America during the COVID-19 pandemic. Gisela Luna (left) was part of the award-winning team.
Episode 3. The Neighbour's Cookbook helps create safe, trusted networks among women and girls at risk of intimate partner violence, and offers other forms of support. Download the cookbook in Spanish.
Episode 1. Faridah Luanda, once a child bride in the Congo, helps prevent the marriage of 13-year-old Paula in Uganda.
Hidden Heroes is produced by Principle Pictures. It is hosted and reported by social justice journalist, filmmaker and impact producer Beth Murphy. Written and produced by Amory Sivertson. Sadie Zuch is the associate producer. Mix and sound design by Mike Moschetto. Editing by Erika Lantz. Additional field production by Najwa Alawi, Shoaib Fakhruddin, Bahti Musa and Daniela Granados. Music by Blue Dot Sessions.