OneMinutesJr workshop in Lipcani, Moldova - Day 4
by Chris Schuepp
LIPCANI, Moldova - October 7, 2010 - "Do you know how many days there are in five and a half years?" This is one of the questions raised at this workshop and the answer is given at the end of the OneMinutesJr video called "Endless days". While the correct answer should be somewhere around 2000 days, we have reached Day 4 of the workshop today, our final day here in the youth penitentiary in Lipcani.
With the six participants we have managed to produce eight films. No, wait! At 10 o'clock on the final day, Andrei comes up with a new idea. He wants to tell us a story about books and the importance of reading and how it helps him personally to get through the days here in the prison. So we unpack the camera and the tripod again and go to the prison library to shoot another film.
While we are editing video number 9 and prepare for the final presentation, the news comes in that yesterday's press conference was well covered by the Moldovan media. Radio Free Europe broadcast a a video reportage, Jurnal TV Moldova showed another reportage and Prime TV is still working on the piece for next week. Apart from giving the young people here a chance to voice their opinions through the videos, one of the main priorities of the UNICEF OneMinutesJr project is it to raise public awareness for issues that are important when it comes to the well-being of children. With the media coverage the workshop has generated, we have already achieved quite a lot: A group of imprisoned children in a remote region of Moldova has made it to the top news in the country!
At lunch time, we are done with the last film. Together we watch all the produced films back-to-back and it is fascinating to see how the boys silently digest their triumph. They surely are not the most respected youngsters here in the penitentiary. They must have gone through a lot of bullying in the last four days and they are now going back to the dialy routine of prison life. Still - they have produced something very important - for themselves and for young offenders in Moldova in general.
They have shown to us and to everybody who watches their films that despite their mistakes, they are all young boys with dreams and with the right to get a second chance in life.