in this section may take you to new, non-UNICEF websites.
opinions and views expressed do not necessarily reflect
the views of the United Nations or its agencies.
MAGIC NEWS ARCHIVE MARCH 2004
Sesame Street Divided
Can you tell me how to get, how to get to Sesame Street? That's what
the classic US Sesame Street theme song used to ask, and
of course everyone wanted to get there... to a place where
children of all colors - and even animals and monsters
- were good, where they spent their time singing and skipping
beneath the blue, blue skies.
But nowadays, hardly anyone in this
neck of the woods asks for directions to such
a place. The 35-year-old program has been dubbed into dozens of languages
in more than 100 countries. In the early 1980s, a
Hebrew edition with local characters, mixed with dubbed
US-made segments, aired successfully in Israel. And
in the optimistic post-Oslo years, a version created for Israeli and
Palestinian audiences was also a hit. But that new Middle East
Sesame Street buckled under the weight of the intifada.
The metaphor of a street that is safe for both Israelis
and Palestinians ultimately became downright far-fetched,
and the program was canceled.
Polish version of the CRC online
The Polisg version of the Convention on the Rights of the Child is the latest
resource added to the MAGIC website's CRC page. To find all more than 30 languages
available now, please go to the MAGIC briefing.
World Newspaper Reading Passport Launched With Ghana Pilot
The World Association of Newspapers launched its World Newspaper
Reading Passport with a pilot project in Ghana, where teachers,
students and journalists are testing the initiative to
encourage young readers to Use the newspaper as a learning
tool in their daily lives.
Children in the media - Bangladesh
A two-day national consultation on "Children's Participation in Media" ended
in Bangladesh on March 18th, 2003 with a framework to pave the way for effective
partnership among television channels, development partners, government, NGOs
Swiss Youth Press Festival 2004 in Basel,
The motto is "Don't just watch,
More info in English, German, French or Italian.
Enter the 13th Annual Greeting Card Contest
Kids, if you are 13 years old or younger, enter the 13th annual Pier1/UNICEF/Weekly
Reader Greeting Card Contest and your artwork could become a UNICEF greeting
card at Pier 1 Imports! The deadline for entries is April11, 2004.
Animated programs and comics, once shunned as strictly children's
media, now attract older audiences with risqué material and
The role of media in childhood obesity
Vicky Rideout, Vice President and Director of the Program for
the Study of
Entertainment Media and Health, testified to the U.S. Senate Commerce,
Science and Transportation ommittee's Subcommittee on Competition,
Commerce, and Infrastructure hearing on the rise of obesity in children
America (March 2, 2004). Panelists' testimony focus on the health
economic consequences posed by increased obesity rates among children,
what government and private industry are doing to educate the public
mitigate the problem. Rideout's testimony focuses on the role of
READ THE FULL TESTIMONY
ICTs to help fighting HIV/AIDS
Within the framework of UNESCO's project "ICTs helping
to fight HIV/AIDS:
changing young people's behavior through preventive education schemes" and
with the support of the INFOYOUTH Programme, HIV/AIDS information
for youth will be established in Mozambique, Tanzania and Bulgaria.
Noddy motors into Chinese market
Children's character Noddy is about to make friends with China's
95 million under-five year olds. Noddy and his Toy Town chums are
being introduced to the Chinese market after owner Chorion awarded
the rights to a Beijing-based publisher.
The deal will mean a rollout of Noddy books, toys, videos and DVDs, and educational
and language products. Nicholas James, Chorion boss, said: "We are confident
children in China will warmly welcome Noddy." He added: "In particular
we are delighted that the character is being used to teach children basic learning
and language skills."
New youth media project in Londonderry
Clionagh Boyle, Director of Derry Children's Commission, officially opened the
Strand Road premises of Children's Express on Thursday, which provides a creative
programme of learning through journalism for young people under 19.
Speaking at the launch Project Co-ordinator and journalist Martin Keeney said: "Our
official opening marks the culmination of months of hard work. We first began
looking for suitable premises back in January of last year but did not secure
our new premises until September. Our Foyle Bureau now has 28 enthusiastic members
who have been receiving training since October last on how to write and produce
articles for the local press, how to take photographs for publication, and how
to record interviews for radio."
Children's Ad Code applies to domestic broadcasters
The new Children's Advertising Code to be introduced by the Broadcasting Commission
of Ireland this summer will only apply to national broadcasters. TV stations
from outside the Republic of Ireland, such as ITV, BBC or BSkyB, will not be
covered by the new code, according to a specialist on media and advertising issues.
tommy arrives in Georgia
tommy, the OneMinutesJr award, has arrived in Georgia's
capital Tbilisi. It will now stay with its new owner, George Baramidze
(16) who won the award for his film "Don't
leave child out" in November 2003.
George had a terrible traffic accident in January 2004 in which he was hit by
a car. As a result, he lost his right leg and had to undergo several operations
while spending two months in hospital. George is back at home with his family
now and already has a number of ideas from new films.
For more info or if you want to get in touch with George, please write to MAGIC.
Young writers competition in Indonesia
UNICEF and Yayasan Kesejahteraan Anak Indonesia (YKAI) are organizing an essay
writing competition for the UNICEF Awards for Indonesian Young Writers 2004.
The theme is "Creating A World Fit For Children": a world free of violence,
diseases, war, and poverty.
The competition is open to everybody from Indonesia aged between 12 and 18. Essay
have to be typed, 4-7 pages in length, using A4 paper, 1.5 lines spacing. If
use computers, please use Arial or Times New Roman fonts, size 12.
Send only your unpublished essay to: YKAI, Jl. Teuku Umar 10, Jakarta 10350 Indonesia,
by 25 March 2004.
12th Croatian Minute Movie Cup
The 12th Croatian Minute Movie Cup is organized by GFR FILM-VIDEO
Croatian Film Association. It will take place on May 28 - 29, 2004 in Pozega,
Croatia. The festival is open to all foreign and Croatian film/video makers
older than 16 who are allowed to send an unlimited number of entries.
The length of videos must not be longer than 60 seconds (including all titles and sound).
CRC in Kazakh
The Kazakh version of the Convention on the Rights of the Child has been added
to the MAGIC resources. There are now 32 different languages and five child-friendly
versions of the CRC in the MAGIC
Russian children have a big new friend
Article from Ynpress about Carel de Rooy, the new UNICEF Representative in Russia
China bans new Internet cafes near schools
Beijing (AP) - Claiming that "harmful cultural information'' online
was hurting children, China said Thursday that Internet cafes may not openwithin
660 feet of schools.
The official China News Service did not say whether those
already operating would be affected. Although Chinese leaders encourage
Internet use for business and education, they have expressed growing
alarm that it is exposing young people to pornography and influences
the government deems harmful. Officials also worry that
students spend too much time playing video games. "Currently some online services
such as Internet bars are breaking the rules, using the Internet
to spread harmful cultural information and seriously hurting the
mental and physical health of young people,'' the report said.
government already limits when and how long minors can use
Internet cafes. The announcement threatened to punish efforts to "clandestinely
set up an online service'' by disguising it as a computer school.
government says China had 79.5 million Internet users at the end of
2003 - the world's second biggest population online after the United States.
According to official figures, the number of Chinese people playing games
online last year grew to 13.8 million. Many are children and teenagers.
L'émission "Parler franchement" - "Straight
talk" by youth
Les enfants sont notre ressource la plus précieuse; personne
ne dira le contraire. Dans le monde entier, les adultes élaborent
les politiques et gèrent les affaires publiques en ayant à l'esprit
les besoins des enfants. Mais qu'en est-il vraiment? Qu'en pensent
ARTICLE in French
ARTICLE in English
OneMinutesJr competition winners announced
TakingITGlobal, UNICEF, the European Cultural Foundation, and the OneMinutesFoundation
ran a contest of One-Minute Video on “communication” leading up
to the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) in December 2003 in Geneva.
Young film makers were invited to create a 60 sec-long video that expressed
what communication means to them. Participation was open to children and young
people aged 12-20. The work had to be done exclusively by youth without major
support from adults. The winner is being awarded with a brand-new HP digital
Winner - Say it All by Eva Pervolovici & Andrei Morgescu (RO)
First Runner-up - Game by Natalia Khavanova (BY)
Second Runner-up - Memories of My Father by Oleg Frolov (UZ) VIEW
Connectivity Students and Trainers Connect People with
Disabilities in Tajikistan
RI-SOL and ORA International began a six-week project to integrate disabled children
outside the school system and disabled adults into mainstream community through
IT training in life skills. Three participants in ORA's Disability Program come
every Saturday to School #10 in Dushanbe to work with Connectivity Project Master
Trainers and students for an hour on the computers and the Internet.
Kiddie TV's 'Boohbah' bounces into the U.S. - but
some experts says it
deserves the boot
Boohbah is the newest variation in television fare
for kids. Created in England by Anne Wood, the controversial
mastermind behind the phenomenally successful television
show Teletubbies, the new PBS program is available in 99 million homes.
Physicians, Scientists to Media: Stop Using the Term "Crack
Thirty leading medical doctors, scientists and psychological
researchers released a public letter calling on the media to stop
the use of such terms as "crack baby" and "crack addicted
baby" and similarly stigmatizing terms, such as "ice babies" and "meth
babies." This broad group of researchers agrees that these terms
lack scientific validity and should not be used.
HIV/AIDS at school
How to live and learn in a world with HIV/AIDS? A new colorful folder published
by UNESCO aims to combat HIV/AIDS-related discrimination at school by raising
awareness about the pandemic. The folder contains three brochures, a red one
for young people, a blue one for teachers and a purple one for parents, all describing
how to cultivate a culture of non-discrimination at school towards those infected
and affected by
REPORT (in pdf - 2.41 MB)
Kaiser Family Foundation Releases New Report
on Role of Media in Childhood
The Kaiser Family Foundation released a
report today reviewing more than 40 studies on the role of
media in the
nation's dramatically increasing rates of childhood obesity.
concludes that the majority of scientific research indicates
who spend the most time with media are more likely to be overweight.
Contrary to common assumptions, however, most research reviewed
report does not find that children's media use displaces more
physical activities. Therefore, the research indicates that
there may be
other factors related to children's media use that are contributing
weight gain. In particular, children's exposure to billions
of dollars worth
of food advertising and marketing in the media may be a key
through which media contributes to childhood obesity.
cites studies that show that the typical child sees about 40,000 ads
a year on TV, and that the majority of ads targeted to kids are
for candy, cereal, soda and fast food. Furthermore,
many of the advertising and marketing campaigns
enlist children's favorite TV and movie characters: from SpongeBob
Cheez-Its to Scooby-Doo cereals and Teletubbies Happy Meals.
The report also cites research indicating that
exposure to food advertising affects children's
food choices and requests for products in the supermarket.
Youth Theater Manual (in French only)
Published within the framework of the project "A
Cultural Approach to
HIV/AIDS Prevention and Care", the manual was developed
by UNESCO's Regional
Bureau for Education in Africa in Dakar, in close collaboration
Division for Cultural Politics and Intercultural Dialogue.
Produced by young people for young people, the manual proposes
an original and creative approach to the prevention
of HIV/AIDS. Both educational and recreational,
the theatre is presented here as a culturally appropriate,
effective and participatory means of prevention. The "theatre forum" -
interactive theatre involving direct participation by the audience - seems particularly relevant in this instance.
THE MANUAL - pdf (4.19 MB)
Television advertising leads to unhealthy habits
in children, says APA task force
Research shows that children under the age of eight
are unable to critically comprehend televised advertising messages
and are prone to accept advertiser messages as truthful, accurate
and unbiased. This can lead to unhealthy eating habits as evidenced
by today's youth obesity epidemic. For these reasons, a task
force of the American Psychological Association (APA) is recommending
that advertising targeting children under the age of eight
On children's TV, we do need another hero - a human
The days when kids, particularly younger ones, watched
shows starring humans - Captain Kangaroo, Mister Rogers, Shari
Lewis, even Pee-wee Herman - are for the history books. Now it's "SpongeBob
SquarePants", "Fairly Odd Parents" and "Powerpuff
Girls," with occasional breaks for human-animated hybrids
like "Blue's Clues" and costumed characters like Big
Bird and Barney. On children's TV, it seems there isn't a live
The WHO Media Award
WHO/Europe will be giving a Media
Award to mark the Fourth Ministerial Conference
on Environment and Health (2004), dedicated to "The
future for our children".
Entries are invited
on subjects related to children's health and environment.
These could feature for example, the human stories, the science,
the politics, or community action on topics such as air pollution, noise,
injuries from traffic, chemicals, poor housing, radio masts/radiation,
poverty, contaminated water, climate change (e.g. floods), hazardous
work, unsafe food, environmental tobacco smoke, asthma or allergy, reproductive health, social issues (e.g. abandoned children).
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