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Adolescents and youth

First inclusive film festival on child rights unveiled in Croatia

© UNICEF Croatia/2011
Stars, children with and without disabilities smile at the opening of Cinequity.

RIJEKA, Croatia, 2 December 2011 - For the first time in Croatia, visually and hearing-impaired children enjoyed screenings of more than 30 movies mostly produced for and by kids during a recent UNICEF-supported Child Rights Film Festival “Cinequity”.

The biggest national cinema chain, Blitz-Cinestar, joined forced with UNICEF on 21-24 November so that more than 50,000 children with and without disabilities experienced the joys of the silver screen together in six major Croatian towns. 

First cinematic experience

In parallel to the screenings, Rieke this year’s host town, rolled out inclusive workshops for children of all ages.

Inspired by UNICEF-developed materials, ‘It’s about ability!’, series of workshops were developed and adapted to preschool and school-aged children. Additionally, for high-school children, the National Film Association organised a short course on media culture.

For some children this will be a first cinematic experience, as only 11 films have been so far adapted for the visually impaired persons in the country. Teamed up with the leading Croatian actors who generously volunteered their time and skills, the festival has managed to triple that number, as all narrations were recorded in the months prior the festival, in cooperation with the NGO Imagine, to promote the rights of persons with disabilities.

© UNICEF Croatia/2011
Children attend a workshop on “It’s about ability” to promote social inclusion in schools and society.

A unique story

Numerous stars and artists enlivened the festival opening including the internationally famous Croatian actor, Rade Serbedzija, who became famous for his supporting roles in the Hollywood films.

While the festival featured six award-winning films on child rights directed by adults from the Netherlands, Poland, UK, Georgia and Greece, the opening film, ‘HRc’,  was produced by a children film group.

‘Hrc’ is a unique story about the life of a boy with Down’s syndrome, featuring him not only as a subject of the film but giving him the role of a co-author.

The Third Children’s Rights Festival is a joint project of The City of Rijeka, UNICEF, the Croatian Film Association, Ombudsperson for Children and the Blitz Cinestar cinema company.

This year’s festival is also supported by Art-cinema Croatia in Rijeka. The biggest share of services, including hotel accommodation, equipment for screenings for visually impaired persons and others were donated to the festival by companies and individuals.

Launched in 2009 on the occasion of the 20th Anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child by UNICEF Croatia in 2009, the festival has been grown bigger in scale and audience numbers. 



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