Congratulations to Poor Kids‘ director Jezza Neumann! This week he was nominated in the Photography category of the Royal Television Society Awards. The ceremony is held each November in Central London — we wish Jezza good luck!
Jezza was also nominated this year for the Rory Peck Awards for his work on Kashmir’s Torture Trail, produced in 2012 for Channel 4 Dispatches in the UK.
Poor Kids just had a very big week…. and Jezza Neumann and Lauren Mucciolo were there to celebrate.
On September 26th it took home the 2013 RFK Award in the Domestic Television category.
Lauren Mucciolo, Kerry Kennedy and Jezza Neumann at the Newseum, Washington DC
On October 1st, a few days later, Jezza and Lauren made their way to the 2013 News & Documentary Awards to be honored with a nomination in the Continuing Coverage of a News Story category.
Jezza Neumann and Lauren Mucciolo at the Emmy Awards, Rose Theater at Lincoln Center, NYC.
Hofstra University is hosting an exciting conference called Covering Suburban Poverty on September 26-27, 2013, designed to offer journalists an opportunity to exchange ideas on best practices and share resources and tools that will better equip them to produce journalism about poverty in suburban communities. Speakers include academic and government experts, and reporters who have covered groundbreaking stories about poverty. RGP’s Lauren Mucciolo has been invited to present a program on Children and Poverty with Melanie Hartzog of the Children’s Defense Fund on the 27th at 10:15am. It should be an interesting conversation about bringing stories about children and families living in poverty to the greater public!
Poor Kids is going to Texas!
The Capital Area Food Bank of Texas is hosting a screening and panel discussion of Poor Kids on September 18th at the George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center in Austin, TX. The film presentation will be followed by a conversation between panelists Kathy Green, Capital Area Food Bank of Texas; Lauren Dimitry, Texans Care for Children; and moderator Monica Williams, Giving City Magazine. The program starts at 6:30pm and will take place in the Boyd Vance Theater. It is a free presentation and open to the public!
We are so excited to announce that Poor Kids received a nomination for the News & Documentary Emmy Awards from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. The Award Ceremony will be held on Tuesday, October 1st at Lincoln Center. ‘Poor Kids’ was nominated in the category Outstanding Continuing Coverage of a News Story – Long Form with three other excellent films (two of which are from Frontline). The Frontline series was honored with 18 nominations in total, and PBS with 45.
Congratulations to Jezza Neumann, True Vision Productions and Frontline — but especially a big ups to Brittany, Roger, Johnny, Jasmine, Jaylan, Joshua, Tyler and Kaylie, and the rest of their families.
‘Poor Kids’, directed by Jezza Neumann and produced by Lauren Mucciolo, has won the 2013 RFK Journalism Award! This is the first time in several years since a PBS Frontline film has received this distinguished honor.
The Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards honor those who report on issues that reflect Robert F. Kennedy’s concerns including human rights, social justice and the power of individual action in the United States and around the world. Entries include insights into the causes, conditions and remedies of injustice and critical analysis of relevant public policies, programs, attitudes and private endeavors.
Established in December of 1968 by a group of reporters covering Robert Kennedy’s presidential campaign, the awards program has far exceeded the expectations of its founders. Led by a committee of six independent journalists, the Awards are judged by more than fifty journalists each year. It has become the largest program of its kind and one of few in which the winners are determined solely by their peers.
The awards ceremony will be held in late September in Washington, DC. Congratulations also to the brave children who shared their stories — Brittany, Roger, Tyler, Kaylie, Sera, Johnny, Jasmine, Jaylan and Joshua.
Emma Gosnell reviews America’s Poor Kids in The Telegraph. “It was their voices – the programme largely consisted of them talking directly to camera – that made it so compelling,” she writes, referring to 10-year-old Kaylie, 11-year-old Sera and 13-year-old Johnny, who shared their stories directly to the cameras.
America’s Poor Kids aired last night on BBC Two to great response. The BBC Blog and Twitter feeds #poorkidsusa and #jezzaneumann were alive with many questions and comments about the film. This morning, The Guardian called it a “haunting film about child poverty in the richest nation on earth.” Writes Lisa Mangan, “The film was a tender curation and display of all the customarily unseen – or customarily ignored, at least by the people in whose power it lies to change things – ramifications of poverty.” The full review is available here.
America’s Poor Kids airs tomorrow night on BBC 2 This World. The British version of the film, known as Poor Kids on PBS’s Frontline, includes Sera and her family from San Francisco with the other children and families from the Quad Cities. Director Jezza Neumann answers questions about the making of the film on the BBC’s blog, which can be found here.
America’s Poor Kids gets 4 out of 5 stars in Time Out London.
Check out the review here, by Gabriel Tate.
If ever we wished a format wasn’t exportable, it’s this. But Brian Woods and Jezza Neumann’s concept of analysing the realities and effects of poverty through interviews with children proves just as punishingly effective in the States as it did in 2011’s UK documentary.
Focusing on three Iowan families laid low by the recession, it exposes the fallacy of right-wing claims that welfare is a hammock rather than a safety net. The parents are desperate to work and the kids desperate to learn, but unemployment benefit is pitiful, medical insurance scanty and waiting lists for subsidised housing on the rise. Theirs are itinerant lives of homeless shelters, motels and a constant, gnawing hunger.
As ever, the kids cut to the quick with the heartbreaking maturity of their observations: ‘Grades is my only way out of here,’ says 13-year-old Johnny; ‘This is not the Great American Dream,’ reckons 11-year-old Sarah. Yet there’s no self-pity, which, perhaps oddly, makes this important film as inspiring as it does despairing.