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In Orissa children report on children's issues

© UNICEF/Lingaraj Panda
Students of Unit 2 Government Girls' High School, Bhubaneswar, having discussions with a press person

The Orissa State UNICEF Office together with the Institute of Media Studies is collaborating in a project “Children Reporting Children’s Issues” which seeks to enhance children’s participation in the media.  The project has four phases: the first is selection of the children and orientation; second, desk research and preparation, third field visits and the collection of the story, and fourth, the writing / editing and publishing of stories by the children – of children, for children.

The countdown began with a three day orientation programme for the children from the 10th to 12th September. Eminent media persons from the print and electronic media conducted the orientation and interacted with the school students for the three days. The enthusiasm and interest shown by the media persons almost matched the enthusiasm and excitement shown by the children, who masterfully demonstrated their knowledge in the school group presentations on the concluding day. Students from seven schools of Bhubaneswar are participating in this pilot project.

© UNICEF/Lingaraj Panda
Students of Central School making a presentation to media persons

“It was a wonderful experience, which left me very excited”, said Sampat Mishra, Unit 8, D.A.V. Public school.

The children, left to their own intelligent ways, identified seven vibrant and thought provoking topics which are very relevant to the lives and development of children in Orissa. The themes chosen were:

• Role of the Anganwadi (child care) centres in child development
• Our village’s sanitation
• Importance given to physical education in our schools
• Quality of education in government, private, urban and rural schools
• Child labour, girl child labour,
• Future and problems faced by children of AIDS affected parents,
• Effect of parent's ambition on the children

“This is an entirely new experience, really enriching and inspiring” said an excited Sudeshna Mohanty, Unit 8, and D.A.V. Public school

The school children took a decision to prepare eight news reports and feature stories for print and electronic media over a period of three months.

UNICEF will facilitate their journey from the classroom to the field, to reporting through news and feature articles in the media.

Lalatendu Acharya
Communication Officer
UNICEF State Office for Orissa

 

 
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