The New Zealand Children’s Screen Trust is part of the Tick for Kids campaign. Tick for Kids is working to make sure children are a central focus in the lead up to the 2014 election and into the next parliament with the call, “It takes a child to raise a country!”
The NZCST is seeking screen industry support for its call for more quality media for Kiwi kids. This means more diverse and quality local programmes for New Zealand kids: local drama, science, news, animation and other under-funded genres on all platforms specifically made for kids. The NZCST is advocating that new funding and a dedicated accessible online platform be provided for kids screen content.
Children and youth are an important audience today and tomorrow. We tell great stories as an industry – why aren’t we telling more of them for our kids?
The NZCST argues that stories about how the world works provide a toolbox for children. What they view and hear teaches children how (and if) they fit into the world, and in what ways they may fit as grown-ups.
“A strong sense of identity is a pre-requisite for creativity of the highest order. The relevance of stories to our own experiences enhances our sense of who we are. Our mental health depends on a belief that we have an identity and a place.”
– Dr Ian Hassall (NZCST Trustee)
The University of Auckland’s recently-released by the Growing Up Study stated that “Many two year olds are using technology with ease, and a majority are spending an average of 1.5 hours per day in front of television.”
Worldwide, apps, games and programmes are being made to target the youngest of our kids.
“Get them early, the thinking is, and these viewers can be hooked for decades, shepherded through a media company’s offerings, whether ad-dependent or subscription-driven, as the youngsters grow up.”
New York Times, 4/7/14
Let’s hook kids to New Zealand stories and content. The Danish Film Institute (a co-production partner on Daniel Joseph Borgman’s The Weight of Elephants) commits 25% of its budget to content for children and youth, with a positive impact on audience numbers.
Countries such as Argentina have dedicated children’s channels that treat their children as citizens not just consumers. We want to expand the imaginative horizons of Kiwi kids by having more of their stories on screen.
You can also help by:
- putting questions to your candidates about their policies for children and media, including at the upcoming industry meetings;
- promoting Tick for Kids;
- enrolling to vote, and
- voting for the party who you think will do their best to put children first.
Your organisation can become a children’s media champion and be kept up to date with NZCST activities. Please contact KidsOnScreen.
The New Zealand Children’s Screen Trust is a registered charity that advocates for more diverse local media for New Zealand children and youth.