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Child-Friendly Schools Documentary Series: Rising Voices

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©UNICEF/2009/Robbie Campbell
Egypt

A UNICEF film series on education titled Rising Voices features on the newly launched ViewChange.org. Rising Voices, features six documentary films focusing on the personal stories of students in different countries and contexts in which child-friendly school policies are being implemented. The individual films were shot across the world, in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cambodia, Egypt, Ghana, Nicaragua and the Sudan.

The new website, created by US television network Link TV, with support by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, combines powerful video stories with the latest semantic web technology, highlighting videos, articles, blogs, and actions about efforts to eliminate hunger, poverty, and disease in the developing world.  ViewChange.org features the entire Rising Voices series.

The Child-Friendly School model is a simple one at heart: Schools should operate in the best interests of the child. Educational environments must be safe, healthy and protective, endowed with trained teachers, adequate resources and appropriate physical, emotional and social conditions for learning. Inclusiveness, gender-sensitivity, tolerance, dignity and personal empowerment are all fundamental to the child-friendly schools model.
Child-friendly schools have become the main approach through which a network of international and national partners is promoting quality education for all children, in everyday situations as well as in emergencies.

Individual segments shot in Ghana and Egypt show how child-friendly schools actively identify excluded children, especially girls, in the community to get them into school.

EGYPT: Raising Yusriya

In Upper Egypt, community schools have emerged as a strong example of how child-friendly school approaches have provided access and quality education to the children of rural farming villages like Abu Teeg – especially for girls.

Thirteen-year-old Yusriya began school four years ago, when Abu Teeg opened a single classroom. Yusriya's portrait features a story that is typical for her village: Her parents are uneducated, while her older brothers have some schooling, having attended a formal government school located hours away by foot. Yusriya's older sisters were not allowed to attend because of the distance. Community mobilization and strong support from the ministry, UNICEF and other partners are addressing the needs of the village and providing it with the sanitation facilities, curricula and motivated teachers that will help it prosper. Girls in Abu Teeg are being educated for the very first time, gaining confidence and ambition that allow them to dream of better lives for themselves and their families.

Watch full-length film at ViewChange.org >>

Watch 2-minute advocacy video and read the full story >>

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© UNICEF/2009/Greg English
Ghana

GHANA:  Dreams for My Daughter

In northern Ghana, child-friendly schools are offering families a concrete way to break the chains of hard labour and transform their lives.
This is the story of 12-year-old Elizabeth, the first girl to go to school in the Napari family – a little girl striving to live her father's broken dream of learning to read and write. Peter Napari's life has relegated him to back-breaking work as a subsistence farmer. He toils alongside his illiterate wife, who carries their youngest child, strapped to her back while she works. Peter is determined that Elizabeth should complete her education, no matter the cost. The success of child-friendly schools in Ghana is attributed to a strong staff support system that enables teachers to defy very high national levels of absenteeism.  It is also reflected in the strength of Elizabeth’s community, which has banded together to build two wells, toilets and a playground. Endowed with a school that provides its children with access to safety and sanitation, today this rural community is thriving.

Watch full-length film at ViewChange.org >>

Watch 2-minute advocacy video and read the full story >>

Learn more about child-friendly schools at UNICEF.org >> 

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ViewChange.org launched by Link TV is the next generation Web site that uses the power of video to tell stories about real people and progress in global development.  The site combines powerful video stories with the latest semantic web technology, highlighting videos, articles, blogs, and actions about efforts to eliminate hunger, poverty, and disease in the developing world.


 

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