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OneMinutesJr workshop in Lipcani, Moldova - Day 2

© UNICEF / Chris Schuepp / 2010
More filming on Day 2 of the workshop in the youth penitentiary in Lipcani, Moldova.

by Chris Schuepp

LIPCANI, Moldova - October 5, 2010 - We were a little bit afraid ahead of the second day of the OneMinutesJr workshop in the youth penitentiary in Lipcani. Not because of the inmates themselves or the special circumstances of the workshop, but because of the fact that there is a certain hierarchy among the young inmates. The ones we work with are rather low on the ladder, so we were afraid the others might put pressure on them to quit the workshop.

But all six of them show up in the morning and we start filming immediately. Vasily (16), who was the cameraman yesterday, is the "actor" today. Actually, it is more of a documentary film than a film with actors. We see Vasily doing wood-works in the prison crafts shop while he tells his story of how he ended up in jail. And, what is most important, he also tells us what he plans to do with his life after he has served his time.

© UNICEF / Chris Schuepp / 2010
Vasily is being filmed in the penitentiary crafts shop.

Nikolai (21) is one of the older inmates here. He is from a rural part of Moldova and loves horses. He is very happy that there are a couple of horses here in the penitentiary. Riding them gives him a feeling of freedom and the affection he feels for the animals also helps him to deal with the harsh reality of being confined to the prison compounds.

The young people here all have one thing in common: They miss their families, because visits are the exception to the rule and Lipcani is far from the center of the country. Andrei (16): "When I was in jail in Chisinau, my sister came to visit me. Since I came here to Lipcani, she cannot come anymore. It takes too long to travel the almost 300 kilometers and back and it is also quite expensive."

In the afternoon, Ion (17) asks me to check the Internet for him and download some images of his hometown Falesti. He just wants to refresh his memory and take a glimpse at what it looks like "out there".





Daily Diary from Lipcani, Moldova (October 2010)


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