|Published March 31, 2007
Article based on ComMattersKenya Press Release
A compilation of nine short animation films made by children in Kenya in August 2006 during the inaugural Lola Kenya Screen film production workshop, has been awarded The Africa Grand Prize “for outstanding achievement in a film made by children” on the final day of the fifth World Summit on Media and Children (5WSMC) in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Films by Children for Children, a production of Lola Kenya Screen, eastern Africa’s first and only international audiovisual event for children and youth, beat 50 other films from 12 African nations–Bénin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, DRC, Gambia,, Malawi, Kenya, Sénégal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Togo–to the trophy in a classic ‘winner takes it all’ manner; no other prize was awarded.
This win has automatically entered the Kenyan production in the international Kids for Kids Festival to be held in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, in September 2007. It will also see the films included on a compilation of the “Best Films Made by Children for Children” to be distributed globally by CIFEJ, the 52-year Canada-based International Centre of Film for Children and Youth of which Lola Kenya Screen is member.
Films by Children for Children, dealing with the daily lives of the children involved, are Targe Can’t Crack It, Mary’s Bad Luck, Marathon, Home Run, Crime Doesn’t Pay, Making Choices, My Dear Alien, Happy Times, and Shopping Spree.
The young filmmakers(aged 10-15 years)are Elaine Nesbitt, Jordan Lechien, Fadhili Ogova, Tracy Nesbitt, Ignatius Juma, Euan Nesbitt, Adima Mesa NyOdero, Samora Michelle, Andreas Ayal, and Adede Hawi NyOdero.
The soundtrack to the films was specially created by Joel Sebunjo, a young Afro-fusion musician from Kampala, Uganda.
The seven-member jury drawing children from Tanzania, Botswana, Lesotho, South Africa, and Surinam said: “…we chose Films by Children for Children because of the amazing creativity and obvious effort put into this project which was done for the first time.”
Receiving the prize at Sandton Convention Centre in the South African commercial capital as cameras clicked and ululations rent the hall, Lola Kenya Screen founding director Ogova Ondego dedicated it to “the voiceless and invisible children who, through media and political conspiracy playing to commercial interests, have driven people below 15 into oblivion, in Kenya and eastern Africa.
Accompanying Ondego on stage was Ringbom, facilitator of the workshop through which Films by Children for Children was made in August 2006.
Films by Children for Children has already been screened in audiovisual events in Cape Town (South Africa), Gdynia (Poland), Berlin (Germany), Goree Island (Senegal), and Nairobi (Kenya). Numerous other festivals have asked to screen it following its sterling performance in South Africa.
Organised by CIFEJ, 5WSMC and Children and Broadcasting Foundation for Africa, this was the first time Kids for Kids International Film Festival ‘running alongside 5WSMC’ was held in Africa.
The jury that feted Kenya’s Films by Children for Children in the presence of an estimated 1500 people at Sandton Convention Centre and numerous television viewers around South Africa, consisted of Neo Matsepe (16, Lesotho), Precious Tshirangwana (13, South Africa), Rowell Fortune (15, Surinam), Boikaubso Mokobo (11, South Africa), Nancy Moshi (15, Tanzania), Chane du Toit (16, South Africa), and Lefa Addenes (14, Botswana).
The 5WSMC, that drew participation from 88 nations around the world to Johannesburg March 24-28, was held for the first time in Africa. The 6WSMC will be held in Karlstad, Sweden in 2010.
Nairobi-based Lola Kenya Screen is an annual international film festival, film production workshop and audiovisual market focusing on children and youth in eastern Africa.
During the festival, children selected from among applicants to the official Lola Kenya Screen programme work for the Children’s Press, Children’s Film Selection Committee, Children’s Jury, Children’s Programmes Presentation, and Children’s Film Production Workshop.
Members of the Children’s Press compile daily reports at Lola Kenya Screen that published DAILY on ArtMatters.Info”http://www.artmatters.info”the official media partner of Lola Kenya Screen.
However the bulk of the children who attend Lola Kenya Screen events do so to just watch films and enjoy themselves during the August school holidays.
Meanwhile following the hugely successful programme in 2006, the second edition of Lola Kenya Screen will be held in Nairobi, Kenya, August 6-11, 2007.
The second Lola Kenya Screen will be held at Goethe-Institut in the Central Business District and in selected venues in Nairobi’s informal settlements of Mathare and Kibera, and the working centres in Industrial Area.
“We are excited about the interest,Films by Children for Children, has generated around the world,” says Lola Kenya Screen creative director and producer Ondego. “This compilation will have been screened in many more festival around the world(Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, DRC, Zimbabwe)by the time a new set of films are made in August 2007.)
In its commitment to uplift the standards of the arts and culture in eastern Africa through journalism, Lola Kenya Screen is calling upon children aged 6-14 years to apply for positions of Children’s Film Selection Committee, Film Jury, Children’s Press, Events Presentation and Animation Film Production Workshop during the second edition of the audiovisual event.
“Parents and guardians are kindly asked to assist their children in applying for this opportunity that seeks to nurture their creative talent and potential and gives them international exposure,” Ondego says, explaining that “Selected participants will be guided through the acquisition of skills of appreciating and judging films, film reporting, events presentation, and filmmaking.”
The Children’s Jury will judge and give Mboni Awards to the Best Films in competition while the Children’s Press will file daily journalistic reports on Lola Kenya Screen (August 6-11, 2007). The articles will be published daily by ArtMatters.Info. The other children will present events and learn how to make films.
Lola Kenya Screen has also invites film submission from all over the world.
Interested candidates are asked to send their applications to the undersigned before April 15, 2007: