Media All Stars was a filmmaking project in early 2008 that aimed to help children in care document their struggles, victories and determination to overcome barriers. It focused on democratising communication technology for young people who are seldom provided with the chance to express their needs or access media technologies.
Over the six-week course, youngsters between the ages of 12-18 received ten filmmaking sessions, delivered by the National Children’s Bureau and expert mentors from both the Media Trust and the BAFTA membership. All the mentors were volunteers and, although many had no previous experience of working with young people, they were keen to share their range of skills and experience. All films were then edited, free of charge, by Cut and Run and two of the films will be available on the BAFTA website shortly!
The project culminated in an 'Educ8 Day and Night' event, hosted at BAFTA and co-presented by the participants. In front of a packed audience at BAFTA headquarters, the young people’s films were premiered on the big screen. It was a memorable night, with many of the participants expressing their gratitude that their filmmaking had been given such recognition and support.
Since the project ended, several participants have been interviewed by BBC World and The Guardian. In addition, the NCERCC advised producers on the new TV production of Dustbin Baby which included a visit to a care home. Each participating home was presented with a video camera and editing equipment to enable the project to continue and inspire a new generation of filmmakers.
Lucy Milich of the National Children’s Bureau summed up the project: "It has been really exciting to see young people develop lifelong skills in media production as well as transferable skills such as group work, communication, marketing, cooperation and time management. We have also seen some participants gain more control of their own lives plus an increased understanding of their rights as young people."