IGHN Film Screening: The 8th

February 27, 2024

When: Monday 8th April 2024 at 17:30

Where: Lighthouse Cinema, Smithfield, Dublin



Thank you to everyone who attended our first film screening of 2024!

Almost 6 years since the Irish public voted to repeal the 8th amendment to the Irish Constitution, the Irish Global Health Network and Women in Global Health Ireland present a special screening of the powerful documentary, “The 8th.” This thought-provoking film delves into the historic campaign for reproductive rights in Ireland, offering a poignant reflection on the journey towards progress and change.

Following the screening was a dynamic panel discussion featuring esteemed speakers Ailbhe Smyth, Dr Jennifer Okeke, and Maeve O’Boyle.

An evening dedicated to keeping reproductive health and rights at the forefront of the conversation. Don’t miss this opportunity to engage in dialogue, reflection, and advocacy as we continue to champion reproductive rights for all.

In partnership with the National Women’s Council of Ireland.

A huge thank you to Directors Lucy Kennedy and Maeve O’Boyle for their generosity and support in arranging for us to have the rights to screen this film.  


Photos from the Event

IGHN Film Screening: The 8th

About the Film

The 8th tells the story of Irish women and their fight to overturn one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the world. After a 35-year struggle, the pro-choice side must radically shift tactics to try to bring this historically conservative electorate over the line.

The 8th traces Ireland’s campaign to remove the 8th Amendment – a constitutional ban on abortion. It shows a country’s transformation from a conservative state in thrall to the Catholic church to a more liberal secular society.

The 8th includes voices from both sides of the debate, but its primary focus is on the dynamic female leaders of the pro-choice campaign. The film follows the veteran campaigner Ailbhe Smyth and self-described glitter-activist Andrea Horan as they chart a bold strategy of grassroots activism and engineer the impossible. This dramatic story is underscored by a vivid exploration of the wrenching failures that led to this defining moment in Irish history.

An urgent narrative, a cautionary tale and a roadmap for progressive reforms in a modern era where authoritarianism is on the rise,  The 8th shows a country forging a new progressive path when reproductive rights are threatened all over the world.

Watch the trailer here



Ailbhe Smyth – The 8th Cast Member and Pro-Choice Activist

High-level campaigner and former academic, with long-standing strategic, political and organisational experience. Co-Director of the Together for Yes referendum campaign. Co-founder and Convenor of Coalition to Repeal the 8th Amendment. Strategic Advisory for Marriage Equality referendum 2015. Wide involvement in NGO and Community sectors.

Currently Chair of Women’s Aid; Chair of Ballyfermot STAR Addiction Services; Board member; Age Action; Board member: Women’s Global Health Network; Patron, Women’s Collective Ireland; Steering Group: Le Cheile: Diversity Not Division.

UCD senior academic for 40 years, and founding Head of Women’s Studies (WERRC) at UCD, with extensive research and lecturing experience.


Dr Jennifer Okeke – Vice Chairperson, National Women’s Council of Ireland

Dr. Jennifer Okeke is the Anti-Trafficking Coordinator with the Immigrant Council of Ireland and the Vice Chairperson of the National Women Council of Ireland (NWCI). She is a community activist and former chairperson of a migrant women’s organisation based in Ireland. Jennifer is on the board of Age Action, and the board of the European Network of Migrant Women (ENoMW) based in Brussels. She has extensive knowledge and expertise on issues of GBV, anti-trafficking, human rights and migration (refugees, asylum seekers, direct provision).

Jennifer was awarded a PhD from Dublin City University, and her research was on the experience of African migrant women trafficked into/through Ireland for sexual exploitation. She holds a Master’s in International Relations, from the School of Law and Government, DCU and a BSC from University College Birmingham. 


Maeve O’Boyle – Co-Director, The 8th

Maeve O’Boyle is an Emmy-award winning editor and producer. She edited The Education of Mohammad Hussein (HBO), which was shortlisted for an Academy Award. She co-produced and edited the Emmy-award-winning and 2014 IRE Award winning, Firestone and the Warlord (PBS). She also edited and co-produced Growing Up Trans (PBS), which won a DuPont Columbia award and co-wrote and edited Do I Sound Gay?, which premiered at TIFF and was awarded the runner up for People’s Choice Award. Other work includes Left of the Dial (HBO), Heat (PBS), 112 Weddings (HBO & BBC) and The Kids Grow Up (HBO), which premiered at IDFA and Full Frame and was awarded a special Jury prize at AFI Docs. More recently she directed, produced and edited The 8th and co-directed and edited Joan Baez I Am A Noise which premiered at Berlinale 2023.





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