in this section may take you to new, non-UNICEF websites.
Therefore, the opinions and views expressed do not necessarily
reflect the views of the United Nations or its agencies.
MAGIC news archive
Rebellion of the canes - UNICEF makes a documentary of an animation
project by Minya children to promote children's rights
Perhaps it is not surprising to find a documentary film featuring
the efforts of young Egyptian video animators being screened at
Lebanon's International Film Festival for Children and Youth. It
is surprising, however, that the young animators are school students
of one of Egypt's poorest provinces who make Cairo's children seem
privileged in comparison.
Rebellion of the Canes documents the work of 25 Minya children who
spent five days making a series of short animation films on topics
relating to children's rights. "We saw the potential of producing
this film for children's rights and we were interested in making
a combination between children's animation and their rights,"
says Simon Ingram, a communication officer from UNICEF, which financed
the film. "We are trying to give the children the right to
have a voice and to have a say as provided in the United Nations
Children's Rights accords," he adds.
UNICEF game wins Web Award
Players of the UNICEF World Heroes game collect
aid supplies in the back of a UNICEF vehicle. ©
The US Fund for UNICEF’s ‘World Heroes’ game has
won the Amusement prize at this year’s South by Southwest
(SXSW) Interactive Web Awards. The ceremony, which is now in its
twelfth year, brings together digital innovators from around the
world for four days of speeches and discussions.
UNICEF World Heroes invites players to become a volunteer and catch
aid supplies as they’re parachuted from an aeroplane.
“We’re delighted that the game’s content and design
has been recognised by the industry”, says Tim Ledwith, Internet
Director at the US Fund for UNICEF. “It was developed last
year with the web consultants Mindshare Interactive Campaigns to
engage a future generation of UNICEF supporters. Judging by the
traffic passing through the site, it’s working.”
The gala award ceremony on 13 March was hosted by comedian Laura
Swisher, from ‘Unscrewed with Martin Sargent’ on G4techTV
and NBC's ‘Last Comic Standing’. She announced winners
in over twenty categories ranging from ‘Best Experimental’
to ‘People's Choice’ to ‘Best of Show’.
Entry to the Web Awards is restricted to sites that launched in
2004 so that winners reflect the Internet's latest trends in design
"The event was full of so many wonderful surprises," explained
SXSW Web Awards Coordinator Shawn O'Keefe shortly after the ceremony.
"It's amazing to bring together the top industry talent, whose
creativity drives development on the web. And it is always a pleasure
for us to host this event for the international online community."
Pitches to kids feed debate about watchdog group -
An advertising industry group known as CARU is charged with monitoring
television ads aimed at children
Unlike most people watching taped television shows, Tina Poturica
doesn't zap through the commercials. Her job is monitoring promotions
aimed at children under 12 to make sure they are accurate and age-appropriate.
One recent morning, Poturica -- remote control in one hand, pen
and legal pad nearby -- zipped through five hours of taped afternoon
shows from a cable cartoon network. She slowed the tape to study
pitches for cereal, snacks and toys. An ad for a kid's fast-food
meal caught her eye enough that she watched it three times.
It featured only the chain's highest-calorie products (double cheeseburger,
fries, soda) and not some of its recently introduced, more-nutritious
alternatives. ''Will a kid think they can only get the toy if they
order the highest-calorie products?'' Poturica wondered. So she
fired off a letter to the company, requesting that it feature some
of the more healthful products in future ads.
UNICEF film wins prize at Cairo film festival - Project
allows children to produce animated stories on rights
A documentary film produced by UNICEF Egypt was among the winners
at last week's Cairo International Film Festival for Children. "Rebellion
of the Canes" - made in 2004 - followed a project which allowed
a group of Egyptian children to produce their own animated stories
on themes related to children's rights. In the title film, children
satirized corporal punishment by showing the teachers' canes coming
to life and refusing to beat pupils.
UNICEF Communication Officer Simon Ingram said that the award was
welcome recognition that children are capable of producing their
own media products. "Cartoon animation is just one way in which
children can find a voice in the modern mass media," said Ingram.
"We would like to see more Egyptian children given this opportunity,
especially when it allows them to raise issues related to their
Clinton Seeks Ratings on Children's Media
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton on Wednesday sharply criticized the
sex and violence in video games and other entertainment directed
at children, calling the prevalence of such images an epidemic.
Mrs. Clinton, a Democrat from New York, also called on industry
leaders to create a uniform ratings system that would warn parents
about sex and violence in video games, television and other forms
of entertainment that children might be exposed to. By contrast,
parents now look to a patchwork of ratings systems that differ from
one sector of the industry to another.
FULL ARTICLE (free subscription needed)
Omatek Launches E-Youth Initiative to Spread Computer Access
Omatek Computers Limited recently flagged off a new project tagged
Omatek e-Youth Initiative. The initiative is geared at putting affordable
computer systems at the disposal of the largest segment of Nigeria's
130 million people who are also the most vibrant. Young people are
at the heart of a new market-thrust.
Young volunteers learn to unleash media
More than 100 young volunteers were today (Feb 25) taking part in
a pioneering course which aims to show them how to unleash the power
of the media.
A series of dynamic youngsters who all run their own voluntary groups
are meeting in Birmingham to learn how to best promote their efforts
to the local community.
The youths, who are all members of the Youth Action Network, are
taking part in The Big Picture event as part of the Year of the
Volunteer campaign's "Youth and Children" month.
All the news that's kid-friendly
At this Paris newspaper, 10-year-olds take part in the editorial
meetings - and choose the stories.
PARIS - It's early morning in the Paris headquarters of leading
French newspaper Mon Quotidien, and the news team is busy discussing
a story on the annual pilgrimage to Mecca.
"Do you know where Mecca is?" asks an editor to the news
team. "I've never heard of it," replies Kajetan, the "editor
in chief." "Neither have I," add two other editors.
That might sound surprising, but you can't blame Kajetan for his
apparent lack of knowledge. He is only 10 years old, and along with
two other primary school kids, Juliette and Francois, he has been
invited to be editor in chief for the day at one of the world's
only daily newspapers for children.
Aimed at 10- to 14-year-old readers, Mon Quotidien marks its 10th
anniversary this month and it has a lot to celebrate. In 10 years
readership has steadily grown. The newspaper is so successful, it
now has three sister publications for ages ranging from 5- to 18-year-olds,
edited by Play Bac Presse.
The Media And Children's Rights Manual (2005)
A new edition of a booklet designed to help journalists monitor
their government’s performance as signatories to the United
Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) is published
The Media and Children’s Rights has been produced by the Bristol-based
media ethics charity MediaWise on behalf of the UN Children’s
Fund, UNICEF. The original edition, commissioned in 1999 to celebrate
the tenth anniversary of the UNCRC is in use in over 20 countries
and has been translated into a dozen languages. It has shaped training
programmes for journalists around the world, sponsored by UNICEF
and the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund.
The revised and expanded, pocket-sized edition, based on the practical
experience of working journalists, includes story ideas drawn from
issues raised by the UNCRC and checklists to ensure that media professionals
acknowledge children rights in their working practices.
“Media professionals are well placed to keep children’s
rights – and their abuse – on the news agenda, by scrutinising
policies and legislation, and challenging those who fail to meet
their commitments to children,” says Lynn Geldof, UNICEF Communication
Advisor for Central and Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent
States, introducing the handbook.
“It is designed to strengthen journalists’ understanding
of children’s rights and to suggest how the issue can generate
news stories and features for print and broadcast media,”
says MediaWise Director Mike Jempson. “We hope they will find
it useful in developing accurate and positive coverage of children
The handbook outlines two milestones for children’s rights
since the first edition: the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs),
signed up to by 191 member states of the United Nations, and A World
Fit for Children, the declaration, adopted by the UN General Assembly
in 2002 to provide criteria against which to measure the policies
and achievements of governments and others concerned with the welfare
It also contains International Federation of Journalists guidelines
and over 60 useful international contacts for journalists seeking
facts, figures, quotes and advice about children’s rights,
including the website www.unicef.org/magic containing Media Activities
and Good Idea by, with and for Children, which MediaWise helped
THE MANUAL (pdf - 369 KB)
Dr. Susan Linn, associate director of the Media Center at the Judge
Baker Children's Center and author of "Consuming Kids: The
Hostile Takeover of Childhood,'' cites The Cosby Show as
the model for accurately portraying parents on TV.
"The parents were caring, present, intelligent and fallible.
There were rules in the house. The kids had chores. They were expected
to do well in school, and it was a really funny program. It's harder
to write comedy around complex programs. It's easier to do with
AWARDS / COMPETITIONS
Make A Difference! video contest deadline extended
English - French - Spanish
The Make a difference! contest has generated an amazing response,
with many young people working on submission, but some were concerned
about meeting the deadline of 1 March...So, we are offering everyone
an additional two weeks to 15 March! This should enable many young
people to complete
submissions, and allow others to further enhance their almost ready
The winner will not only be invited to come to New York to present
the winning submission, but the video will also be the official
Voices of Youth Public Service Announcement. With such great prizes
we strongly encourage everyone to enter.
Le concours vidéo-minute «Faites bouger les choses!»
a engendré un nombre stupéfiant de réponses.
De nombreux jeunes étaient quasiment prêts à
envoyer leur vidéo mais d’autres avaient indiqué
qu’ils auraient du mal à respecter le délai
du 1er mars… Nous avons donc décidé d’offrir
à tous les candidats deux semaines supplémentaires
et de repousser la date limite au 15 mars. Ce nouveau délai
devrait permettre à de nombreux jeunes de terminer leurs
projets et à d’autres d’améliorer encore
les vidéos qu’ils étaient prêts à
Non seulement le (la) gagnant(e) sera invité(e) à
New York pour présenter sa vidéo, mais sa vidéo
deviendra le message officiel de la Voix des jeunes. Compte tenu
de ces prix, nous encourageons vivement tout le monde à participer.
Pour plus d’informations sur le concours, visite la page de
¡Marcar la Diferenca!¡Plaza de presentación hata
el 15 de marzo!
El concurso ¡Marcar la Diferenca! ha tenido muy buena acogida
y muchos jóvenes han acabado ya sus vídeos, pero algunos
están preocupados porque piensan que no podrán terminarlos
antes del plazo de la presentación, que es el 1 de marzo.
Por ello, hemos decidido ampliar el plazo dos semanas más,
hasta el 15 de marzo. Esto permitirá que muchos jóvenes
terminen su vídeos y que aquellos que hayan terminado sus
presentaciones tengan la oportunidad de perfeccionarlas.
El vídeo ganador se convertirá en el anuncio oficial
de servicio público de La Juventud Opina. Con estos premios
y otros más, esperamos que todos se animen a enviar sus anuncios.
Para obtener mas información, visita La
NEWS / PROJECTS
'Kids' Crossroads': Teens produce cross-border TV programme
in the Caucasus
NEW YORK, 25 February 2004 - In Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia,
young people are starting to take over the airwaves. Their mission:
To educate their peers, their parents, neighbours and decision-makers
through a new youth-produced TV programme, 'Kids' Crossroads'.
'Kids' Crossroads' is a hands-on project that teaches young people
how to address the issues that matter to them through television.
The project lets teens produce their own TV programming covering
topics ranging from conflict resolution and prevention to social
inclusion and health issues. Through the medium of television, adolescents
can share with their peers across the region the common challenges
of growing up.
ARTICLE AND VIDEO
NEWS / PROJECTS
Catching Them Young - Kaila!
The Fiji Times has launched "Kaila!", the country's first
youth newspaper, and the children of Fiji are loving it. Fiji Times
managing director Tony Yianni highlighted the importance of giving
children a forum of their own in which they can actively learn and
"It's become the voice of Fiji, very quickly, rather surprisingly
because they trust the paper," he told the Commonwealth Press
Union editors forum in Sydney this week. In nations such as Fiji
where technological uptake is slow and in some areas non-existent,
newspapers act as an important tool for national development.
TV's children confuse reality with fiction
Sociologist N. Rajaram says: "Media plays a big role in how
today's generation deals with their problems. Movies, soaps and
glossy magazines deliver a variety of ideas to teenagers. Some of
them feign their own kidnapping to get desired results. The problem
is that certain television serials portray such acts in jest and
children think that they can get away with anything and that faking
one's own abduction is a child's play."
Arctic Youth Impressions - Your North, Your Community,
Are you looking for an outlet to express yourself? Do you
want to share your thoughts and opinions with others? The Arctic
Council's Future of Children and Youth in the Arctic Initiative
is calling on Arctic youth from all circumpolar countries to submit
creative pieces of work to be posted on the On Top of the World
Web site. Essays, Photography, Poetry - Enter by February 28th!
Danger - TV in the home
Parents should exercise the same control over their children's TV
viewing as they do over tablets or chemicals in the home. That was
the warning issued today by psychology experts in Birmingham, increasingly
alarmed at the influence of violent TV on impressionable children.
Researchers at Birmingham University's Centre for Forensic and Family
Psychology have now issued safety guidelines. They say the availability
of videos, satellite and cable TV in the home means children now
have access to " violent media inappropriate to their age,
developmental stage and mental health".
PROMAX&BDA joins with UNICEF on one minute video
contest - NEW DEADLINE is March 15th, 2005!!!
Winning Entry Will Serve As Voices of Youth PSA, Airing Globally
In Celebration of ICDB
PROMAX&BDA, the global, non-profit association dedicated to
advancing the role and effectiveness of promotion, marketing and
broadcast design professionals in the electronic media, has signed
on as co-sponsor of UNICEF's Voices of Youth*s One Minute Video
Contest. The competition, open to anyone under the age of 25 anywhere
in the world, asks contestants to demonstrate how young people are
speaking out, taking action and making a difference in their community
and the world at large.
"Unless we work with children, for children, we will never
achieve the goals we have set to achieve. Make a Difference contest
is another way that UNICEF is setting the stage for real youth participation
and partnership" says Jeannette Gonzalez, Programme Coordinator,
UNICEF's Children's Broadcasting initiatives. "UNICEF very
much appreciates the support given to this contest by PROMAX&BDA
and its members."
The winning entry will serve as the official public service announcement
for UNICEF's Voice of Youth, a global website for young people to
explore, discuss and take action on issues that affect them. In
addition to prizes for the winning video entry, the resulting PSA
will be made available for broadcast around the globe in celebration
of The International Children's Day of Broadcasting, December 11,
2005. PROMAX&BDA will fly the contest winner(s) and a parent
or guardian to New York City to attend the organization's annual
conference, June 21 through 23 at the Marriott Marquis at Times
Square. PROMAX&BDA will also host a 45-minute session focusing
on the winning video entry and discussion with the young video artist.
"I cannot think of a more effective means for communicating
the power of television as well as the importance of getting involved,"
said Jim Chabin, CEO of PROMAX&BDA in making the announcement.
"This competition clearly demonstrates the formidable impact
that young people have on the world when they decide to speak out,
take action and make a difference. And by encouraging others to
join that effort, the potential for effecting positive global change
is just awe-inspiring. I'm anxious to see the entries and meet the
winner and know they will make an indelible impression on our worldwide
membership this coming June."
Criteria for video submissions include: showing how young people
can and are taking action to make the world, and their own communities,
a better place. Video must capture the mission of Voices of Youth
-- to promote and protect every child's right to know more, say
more and do more about the world they live in. Video must be exactly
one minute in length. Participants must be below 25 years of age.
Submissions can be made either by an individual or group, and can
be sponsored by an organization or corporation; however, each individual
or group is limited to only one submission. All videos should be
free of copyright materials. Deadline for submission is March 1,
The International Children's Day of Broadcasting
is celebrated on the second Sunday of every December, is a day when
broadcasters around the world "Tune in to Kids". They
air quality programming for and about children. But most of all,
they allow children to be part of the programming process, to talk
about their hopes and dreams and share information with their peers.
The Day is a joint initiative of UNICEF and the International Academy
of Television Arts and Sciences. Every year, thousands of broadcasters
in more than a hundred countries take part in the day, celebrating
it in ways that are as unique and special as children themselves.
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