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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

On the Next Episode of The Lead

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June 14th, 2013
06:20 PM ET

Actress Frieda Pinto lends a voice to disadvantaged girls

Her breakout role was as a girl fighting to survive on the streets of Mumbai in the 2008 smash "Slumdog Millionaire."

Now actress and activist Freida Pinto is using her celebrity to tell the stories of young women across the globe n the new CNN documentary "Girl Rising."

This film follows nine girls in nine different countries, all struggling for education and empowerment.

Pinto joins renowned writers and actresses like Meryl Streep and Cate Blanchett who help tell those girls' stories.

"A film like this reaches out to people from different parts of the world, and especially people we want to help us in influencing decisions, and policy makers as well," said Pinto.

Using celebrity voices makes the film all the more powerful because they have a wide reach, and a fan base, said Pinto.

"I feel through this film I have had the opportunity to do a little bit of what I can possibly do, and continue advocacy in whichever possible way I can," said Pinto.
Growing up in Mumbai, Pinto witnessed incredible poverty, and saw girls denied an education and sometimes forced to marry and have children while they were still children themselves.

Pinto said the privileges she experienced growing up motivated her to become part of the “Girls Rising” project.

Pinto said the advantages she experienced as a child were denied to other children, and she was aware of the unfairness of the situation.

"I had a good education and a lot of children did not," said Pinto. "It was unfair because from the time I was little, all I was told was education is like a basic necessity, like food, clothing, and water, and that was not really the case."

"The reason that I wanted to be part of this project was because it talks about education for all without any discrimination, especially targeting the 61 million children, girls, who are not in school and trying to bring them into school," said Pinto.

Watch 'Girl Rising' Sunday, June 16, at 9 p.m. ET on CNN.

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