A single mother’s fight for child care for all


Regular price $129.00


Human Rights Watch International Film Festival | San Francisco DocFest

Expanding Childcare and Preschool Access • Working Parents • Mental Health • Families of Color

Date of Completion: 2022 | Run Time: 89 minutes​​ | Language: English with English & Spanish subtitles | Captions: Yes | Includes: Transcript and Study Guide | Director: Tamara Perkins | Producers: Tamara Perkins and Sara Maamouri

CLARISSA’S BATTLE follows single mother and activist Clarissa Doutherd as she works tirelessly to build a powerful coalition. The coalition’s goal is to make local, state and national leaders understand a desperate need shared by families, parents and children across the country, from low-income to middle. What these families need is simple on the surface: child care and early education funds. Enough to allow parents to continue to work. Enough to keep families off the streets. Enough to give their children a chance at a productive, successful future. This film documents the movement for child care access, but also the tenacity of a woman who experienced the shock of financial insecurity after the birth of her son, and her determination to stop it from happening to anyone else. It’s about the struggle experienced by millions of families unseen and unspoken of by their communities. It is about what happens when a woman rises to grasp her power and says, “Enough.”


Educational Media Reviews Online | Reviewed by Giovanna Colosi, Librarian for the School of Education, Subject Instruction Lead, Syracuse University
"The documentary can be used for courses and educational programs that cover early childhood education, social issues, social justice, and black studies. It is well-suited for academic library collections."

Video Librarian | J. Zimmerman
"Anyone interested in the behind-the-scenes aspects of social justice advocacy will want to see this documentary. Clarissa’s Battle painstakingly documents the time, effort, and day-to-day work that goes into successful activism. Highly Recommended."

Maya Soetoro-Ng, Obama Foundation Asia Pacific Region | Co-Founder of Ceeds of Peace | Leadership, Peace Education and Movements Faculty, Matsunaga Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution, University of Hawaii, Mānoa
"This is a moving film about a strong womanʻs battle for child care and support. Clarissaʻs battle is for all of us, and for the betterment and resilience of society. Her advocacy and activism help us to understand systemic inequalities and encourage participation that is both fierce and tender. This film asks us to challenge injustice with careful, deep listening to the frontline communities who have suffered without despair and are finding sustainable and just solutions. Clarissa shows us that true courage is about walking down a long road, sometimes alone, with little rest and nourishment, without assurances but with imagination and persistence. She is an inspiration and Tamara Perkinsʻ spotlight helps us all to find the courage we need to keep walking our own paths."

Tamara Perkins is an award-winning filmmaker and changemaker focused on stories that inspire transformative change through dialogue, healing and advocacy. She founded Apple of Discord Productions in 2006, connecting media, activism and healing through programs such as the Wisdom Project and San Quentin Media Project – which trained at-risk youth and incarcerated men in filmmaking as a tool for transformation.

Perkins’ film Life After Life (2018) began in her yoga class inside San Quentin State Prison when the men asked her to tell their story, and continues to be a catalyst for learning and advocacy nationally. Justice impacted herself, this film provides an often overlooked proximity in storytelling. Rebound (2021) and her upcoming film, Clarissa’s Battle (2022), were each similarly inspired by a personal connection to the subject matter. Her recent feature script melds present day social, moral, and ethical questions with a Woman-driven SciFi Thriller. As a national speaker, Perkins’ repertoire spans from filmmaking to prison reform and human rights. She is a recipient of Evident Change’s Media for a Just Society Award. Perkins received her MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts and is an adjunct faculty at Skyline College. Perkins' work has become a catalyst for change, learning and advocacy for some of our nation's most misunderstood and overlooked issues.