Santa Barbara, CA – When the winners of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation‘s 2013 Swackhamer Disarmament Video Contest were recently announced, the 5th grade students from the Osaka, Japan YMCA International School didn’t take home the Grand Prize. They did, however, win over many hearts.
In fact, the 5th graders took Second Prize and received $300 for their video in which the students are seen on camera, describing their world as if there had been a nuclear attack. They relate scenes of horrific destruction and feelings of terrible loss. Their video then turns the corner toward hope, with the students pleading, “Don’t let this be the story of my future. We must abolish nuclear weapons in my lifetime.”
While their piece is truly provocative, perhaps what’s most impressive is not the video itself, but what the 5th graders decided to do with their prize money. According to their teacher, Junlah Madalinkski, the students divided their prize money among three organizations; Green Legacy Hiroshima, a UNITAR initiative that is promoting peace through spreading worldwide the seeds and saplings of the trees that survived the atomic bombing of Hiroshima; Tsumugi, an after-school center that supports the children evacuees of Fukushima who have resettled in the Kansai region; and an animal shelter that is working to save the abandoned animals of Fukushima.
Rick Wayman, NAPF Director of Operations and head of the judging committee for the Swackhamer Contest commented, “Each year, people of all ages, from all over the world, create videos about issues related to nuclear abolition. The best videos are those that touch someone’s heart or awaken someone to new ways of thinking. In this case, not only did the Osaka 5th graders create an emotional video, but the way in which they donated their prize money was equally touching. We can all learn from this thoughtful group of 5th graders.”
This year’s Grand Prize winner of the Swackhamer Video Contest was Cecilia Gallagher with her engaging and imaginative video entitled A Bright World With a Dark Future. Third Prize went to Ryan Cheng for his work entitled The Abolition of Nuclear Weapons. Honorable mentions went to Nathan Ko for They Never Told You and Sarah Momen for We Can Make the World Stop. All of the videos may be viewed on the NAPF website at www.wagingpeace.org or on Youtube at www.youtube.com/user/Swackhamer2013.
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For further comment, contact Rick Wayman at firstname.lastname@example.org or Sandy Jones at email@example.com or call (805) 965-3443.
The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation — The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation’s mission is to educate and advocate for peace and a world free of nuclear weapons and to empower peace leaders. Founded in 1982, the Foundation is comprised of individuals and organizations worldwide who realize the imperative for peace in the Nuclear Age. The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation is a non-partisan, non-profit organization with consultative status to the United Nations. For more information, visit www.wagingpeace.org.