April 8, 2015

NEWS / TV: UNICEF co-sponsored TV documentary gives unique insights into the lives of child monks

PRAGUE, Czech Republic, 4 April 2015 - Today the Czech Television featured a documentary titled "The Little Monk", which was co-produced by the Czech Committee for UNICEF with the support of UNICEF Bhutan. The documentary presents the life-stories of three boys who were by various circumstances forced to enter a monastery. For centuries, monastic institutions in Bhutan have provided shelter to orphans and children from the poorest families and it is estimated that they currently cater for over 4,000 boys.

The situations that these little monks must cope with behind monastery walls are in many respects characteristic for the country. UNICEF's priority is to satisfy the basic needs of these children, i.e. provide safe water, sanitation, hygiene, and healthcare. In partnership with Bhutan's Office for the Management of Monasteries (Dratshang Lhengtshog), UNICEF strives to ensure that the child monks continue their education and are protected from violence, corporal punishments and all forms of abuse.

The documentary was filmed in October 2014 in the Kabesa, Punakha and Paro regions. 

"I am happy that after five years, we were able to follow up on the story of a boy called Jamtso, whose life was depicted in an earlier documentary Forgotten children. The viewers are able to see a complex image of life-stories and thus better understand the variety of reasons why young boys become monks. It is a unique opportunity not only to become a part of their lives even for a short while but also to make a difference by making a contribution to support UNICEF programs in Bhutan," says Pavla Gomba, Executive Director of the Czech National Committee for UNICEF.

The newly appointed Czech Goodwill Ambassador, the actress Jitka Cvancarova, also participated in the making of this documentary and presented a symbolic cheque for $117,000 to the representatives of UNICEF Bhutan. The money fundraised from Czech donors will be used to support UNICEF WASH and child protection programs in Bhutan.

Source: UNICEF

Info in Czech at UNICEF Czech Republic

April 7, 2015

NEWS: Registration Opens for World Young Readers Prizes

Paris, France and Frankfurt, Germany, 7 April 2015
For immediate release

Registration Opens for World Young Readers Prizes

The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) has opened registration for the 2015 World Young Reader Prizes, which annually honour news media that develop strategies and projects to effectively engage children, teenagers and young adults.
 Deadline for entries in 5 May.

Attacks on press freedom figure strongly in this year's awards: a special category for "teaching freedom" will honour projects that make sure new generations understand the importance and fragility of freedom of expression and the role of journalists who have worked and died in its service.
"More than ever before, it is essential that young people understand the central role that press freedom plays in democratic society," said Dr Aralynn McMane, Executive Director for Youth Engagement and News Literacy at WAN-IFRA. "We witnessed some outstanding work in teaching about freedom of the press after the deadly attack on Charlie Hebdo, and know there are more projects out there to be shared. WAN-IFRA wants to make sure those efforts are recognised and repeated as widely as possible."

The World Young Reader Prizes will also feature a second special category on "Digital First," for news publishers that most creatively engage the young solely through mobile telephone, tablets or other digital devices. The category is supported by CCI Europe.

The other categories include brand (marketing initiatives), editorial (for innovative content strategies), enduring excellence, news in education (supported by sitesALIVE), public service, the Natasa Prize for printing plants and the World Young Reader News Publisher of the Year.
Entries are being accepted through 5 May. Full details can be found at http://www.wan-ifra.org/worldyoungreaderprize

All categories call for activities that target people under age 25. The awards will be presented on 3 September in Mumbai, India, as part of the WAN-IFRA India Conference & Expo.

WAN-IFRA, based in Paris, France, and Frankfurt, Germany, with subsidiaries in Singapore and India, is the global organisation of the world's newspapers and news publishers. It represents more than 18,000 publications, 15,000 online sites and over 3,000 companies in more than 120 countries. Its core mission is to defend and promote press freedom, quality journalism and editorial integrity and the development of prosperous businesses.

Inquiries to: Aralynn McMane, Executive Director for Youth Engagement and News Literacy, WAN-IFRA, 96 bis, rue Beaubourg, 75003 Paris France. Tel: +33 1 47 42 85 18. Fax: +33 1 42 78 92 33. E-mail: worldyoungreaderprize@wan-ifra.org

NEWS / PROJECTS: Syrian Refugee Children Capturing and Sharing Their Lives with Disposable Cameras

The Syrian civil war has been raging for over four years now, and millions of Syrians have fled their homes and into neighboring countries as refugees. As refugees struggle with basic necessities and figuring out their futures, a new project has popped up to give refugee children a creative outlet and a voice through photography. Hundreds of children have been documenting their tumultuous childhood experience using disposable cameras.

It's all part of a one year project known as "Lahza2″ ("Glimpse" in Arabic) by Zakira("Memory" in Arabic), a photo-centric NGO. The organization partnered up with Unicef to provide 500 disposable cameras to refugee children between the ages of 7 and 12 who are living in tent communities across Lebanon.

Full article

PUBLICATIONS: Children and Media: A Global Perspective


Taking a global and interdisciplinary approach, Children and Media explores the role of modern media, including the internet, television, mobile media and video games, in the development of children, adolescents, and childhood.
  • Primer to global issues and core research into children and the media integrating work from around the world
  • Comprehensive integration of work that bridges disciplines, theoretical and research traditions and methods
  • Covers both critical/qualitative and quantitative approaches to the topic
by Dafna Lemish
ISBN: 978-1-118-78706-9
296 pages
February 2015, Wiley-Blackwell

More info

April 6, 2015

CALL FOR ENTRIES: Cinekid 2015

Starting 2 April 2015 you can send in your latest film productions for Cinekid's two prestigious film competitions. The Best Children's Film Competition showcases the best new works for children and young people (from 3 up to 14 years old) from all of the world. All films competing have a chance to be awarded by both the children audience as well as by a professional jury (€10.000 prize money). Please click here to read the full regulations.

Filmmakers of animated shorts without dialogue can apply for the European Short Animation Film Competition for a chance to be awarded by a jury of professionals. The deadline for both competitions is 15 June 2015. Please click here to read the regulations. For more information, please click here.

You can also now send in your submissions for the annual Cinekid New Media Competition. From the submissions, twelve works will be selected, from which one will be awarded the Cinekid Lion for Best New Media Production and €7.500,-. Any project that has been released between 1 July 2014 and 1 June 2015 is eligible. The deadline is 1 June 2015. Please click here to read the relevant regulations. 

April 1, 2015

ARTICLES: Should parents ever worry about Minecraft?

In the space of a few years, the computer game Minecraft has come to dominate the spare hours of millions of children, and has even entered the classroom. But is this an entirely good thing, asks Jolyon Jenkins.

If I want to irritate my 13-year-old son, Joe, I refer to Minecraft as "digital Lego". He grew out of Lego a long time ago.

But that's what Minecraft is - a computer game in which you build things using cubic blocks. But it's Lego on steroids. You never run out of blocks and they never topple over. You can walk among your own creations, and play online with other people who are in the same world.

Sometimes, monsters come out after dark to try to kill you, which is never pleasant, but compared with games like Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty, Minecraft is innocent, peaceful, and pretty wholesome.

So why does it drive so many parents to distraction?

Full article

March 28, 2015

NEWS: Children spend six hours or more a day on screens

The amount of time children spend glued to a screen has risen dramatically in the last 20 years, a new report suggests.

Children aged five to 16 spend an average of six and a half hours a day in front of a screen compared with around three hours in 1995, according to market research firm Childwise.

Teenaged boys spend the longest, with an average of eight hours.

Eight-year-old girls spend the least - three-and-a-half hours, according to the study.

Screen time is made up of time spent watching TV, playing games consoles, using a mobile, computer or tablet.

full article

March 24, 2015

NEWS / FESTVALS / AWARDS: UNICEF announces winners for short film contest 'Kallola'

On Friday, UNICEF, Odisha in partnership with AAINA (an Odisha based voluntary organisation) announced winners for 'Kallola', a short film contes. The contest had received 27 entries in 30, 60 and 90 seconds' duration based on the theme, 'Ending Violence against Children'.


Launched in October last year, the contest invited entries from professional and amateur filmmakers under four sub themes: Child Labour, Child Sexual Abuse, Child Marriage and Corporal Punishment. A short workshop for filmmakers on communicating issues through short films was held in November 2014.


Five entries were awarded in the award ceremony. While, 'The Voice' by Santosh Panda on child sexual abuse, received the 1st prize, 'Building Knowledge' by Soham Dutta on child labour won the 2nd Prize. 'So Sweet of You' by The Mantrra on child labour received the 3rd Prize. The Jury's Choice award went to 'Chotu' by Biswajit Kuldi. Children's Choice award went to 'The Right Glass' by Biswanath Rath. 


Speaking on the occasion, Yumi Bae, Chief, UNICEF Odisha said, "These short films remind us of the inviolable human rights that each and every child is born with and the responsibility that each of us, as a member of family, community and society have in ensuring that no child is denied his or her basic rights."

full article

March 23, 2015

OPPORTUNITIES: Comic & Cartoon Competition - Gender Equality: Picture It!

About the Competition

UN Women together with the European Commission, the Belgian Development Cooperation, and UNRIC is organizing a Comic and Cartoon Competition on Gender Equality.

Show us what comes to your mind when you reflect on women's rights and empowerment and on the relationship between women and men. Get familiar with the Beijing Conference and its outcome document, the Beijing Declaration and its Platform for Action. Seek inspiration for your drawings in the 12 Critical Areas of Concern of the Beijing Platform!

The Competition is open to comic and cartoon artists and art students, from 18 to 28 years old, who are residents of an EU member state.

Please note that your comic or cartoon must be without words.

More info

March 21, 2015

NEWS / TV: First Kurdish children’s TV channel in Turkey ready to air

Turkey's first Kurdish-language children's channel will start broadcasting on March 21, the date of Newroz, Turkish media reported.

Celebrated on March 21 in large areas across Asia including Persia and Central Asia, Newroz has particular significance for Turkey's Kurds with hundreds of thousands of celebrating in the countries' predominantly Southeast, East and in Ä°stanbul.

A private network based in the southeastern Turkish province of Diyarbakır, Zarok TV, will be the first television channel in Kurdish aimed at children.

full article