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DVD sheds light on children in care

DVD sheds light on children in care

A moving film produced by Birmingham City Council that shows the challenges faced by children in care has won a top TV prize.

The DVD scooped Best Promotional Programme at this year’s Royal Television Society Midlands awards at the city’s Town Hall last night hosted by TV presenter Myleene Klass and Channel 4 News’ anchorman Krishnan Guru Murthy.

Called Making A Difference for Children in Care, the film features young people telling their often harrowing real-life stories of how they came into care.

Issues faced by the young people include sexual abuse, parental alcohol and drug dependency and neglect.

Former Birmingham Poet Laureate Dreadlock Alien, who was himself a looked after child, narrates the DVD, made by Midlands-based digital media company Iceni.

The film is to be used as a resource tool for teachers and anyone else who works with children to give them greater insight into the particular needs of those in care.

Statistics highlighted in the powerful 20-minute DVD include the fact that only six per cent of looked after children go to university compared to the national average of 30 per cent.

In Birmingham, only 13 per cent of children in care gained the benchmark five A* – Cs at GCSE level in 2007 compared to the city average of 60 per cent.

Sue Ayres, head of Looked After Children’s Education Services (LACES), said: “We are absolutely delighted to have won such a prestigious award.

“The film is really powerful and gets across what life is like for our looked after children.

“It also shows how with the right support these young people can become real success stories. Hopefully it will challenge misconceptions that some people may have and promote greater understanding of their needs.”

Angie Cardwell, a teacher consultant with the City Council’s Action for Inclusion team which produced the DVD, added: “The aim was to tell the stories behind the challenges that these young people can present to schools.

“Sometimes they can push the boundaries because they don’t trust adults. Often they don’t have a reason to trust them.

“LACES do a wonderful job in improving the outcomes and life chances of these very vulnerable young people and this DVD highlights the great work the team does.”

The RTS Midlands Centre Awards 2009 took place at the Town Hall, Birmingham last night, 29th October at 6.30pm.

It aims to celebrate the best of the region's media talent and production.

ENDS

Further information from Shahid Naqvi 0121 303 3635.

  • Category: Local Services
  • Reference number: null
  • Issue date: 29 October 2009