On the 20th of November the award ceremony of the SunChild 10th International Environmental Festival took place, the winning films were announced and several films received the Jury’s special mention prizes.
During the closing ceremony of the festival President of the Sebastatsiner Educational Foundation Ashot Bleyan was present, as well as Ruben Khachatryan, Director of the Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets (FPWC), and Sona Kalantaryan, Director of the SunChild 10th IEF. The directors of the presented films joined the ceremony live, who also had the opportunity to thank the audience for the assessment.
The winners of each category were determined by the independent international Jury Members.
Wildfire Prevention Film Competition
Winning Film: Not if but when: Wildfire Solutions; film by Rebekah Hood-Sava, Radu Sava; United States
Jury Special Mention: WILDER THAN WILD: Fire, Forests, and the Future; film by Kevin White; United States
Wildlife Preservation Film Competition
Winning Film: Sockeye Salmon. Red fish; film by Dmitriy Shpilenok, Vladislav Grishin; Russian Federation
Jury Special Mention: Ticino, a source of biodiversity; film by Marco Tessaro, Italy
Environmental Issues Film Competition
Winning Film: On Thin Ice, film by Henry M. Mix, Boas Schwarz, Germany
Jury Special Mention:
The Beekeeper, film by William McGregor; United Kingdom
The Meadow – Paradise Lost, film by Jan Haft; Germany
Educational Film Competition
TIGERS ON THE BORDER; film by Katarzyna Górniak; Poland
SunChild IEF Team and Audience Choice: A Short Film About Ice; Film by Adam Laity, United Kingdom
At the end of the Closing Event the Certificates for the participants of the Journalistic Workshop-competition were presented. And the start of the competition was announced. Journalists will have two months to prepare the multimedia reportage/article about the Wild Animals Kept in brutal conditions in Armenia, and in January 2022 an independent Jury will determine the winner.
Due to the global pandemic, the SunChild 10th International Environmental Festival was held online. But as the organizers mentioned, the online format also had its advantages. The festival was able to expand its audience. Previously, only the residents of the place where “SunChild” was held were able to take part in it, but now an unlimited number of people, regardless of their location, took part. One of the positive features was that all the regions of Armenia and Artsakh joined the festival, thus ensuring wide public awareness about the festival. A record number of views was registered on the first day of the festival.
It’s already 15 years the Foundation for the Preservation of the Wildlife and Cultural Assets is organizing the SunChild IEF, having a great eco-educational component, which has passed on environmental knowledge to thousands of people, especially youth, through films screened over the years. Every year, Viva-MTS, Mkhitar Sebastatsi Educational Complex make a big contribution to the organization of the festival.
The Festival screens wildlife and environmental films from all over the world and hosts workshops, exhibitions and media campaigns designed to foster a culture of environmental stewardship. During the 15 years of the festival’s existence, more than 700 films from 150 countries around the world have been screened. The SunChild International Environmental Festival is the first and only of its kind in the South Caucasus region. The Festival takes place in autumn, but it also hosts screenings and workshops year round throughout Armenia for youth. This provides a space for youth to understand and engage environmental issues in order to find local solutions.
* The Journalistic Workshop-competition was organized with the help and support of the FPWC and International Animal Rescue (IAR).
** The SunChild 10th International Environmental Festival was supported by US Forest Service and Viva-MTS.