Friday, January 22, 2016

UNICEF partnership with Lao animator flourishes as pioneering early learning clay-mation series enters third season

Animator Souliya Phoumivong sets up a new scene in season 3 of “My Village”
Picture a small road sidling along the Mekong River just outside Vientiane. Thailand visible just across the water. On both sides line row after row of family homes with motorbikes and pick-up trucks clustered outside. Most offer some kind of homemade business opportunity – a shop, food stall, a mechanic. Behind one of the houses, tucked away almost out of sight, sits an unassuming building. The faintly turquoise, washed exterior walls, pretty potted plants and ordinary appearance disguise the hive of creative activity within. Meet the world’s most unlikely Claymation studio.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Meet the Superkids of Laos

Chandavone and her daughter Namkhing
Chandavone (25) Homchanh (20) and Chanhom (28) have one thing in common. They are the mothers of three buoyant 13 month-old children from the small village of Ban Namahee in the south east of Laos. Lively and healthy, the children wrestle in their mother’s arms, mouthing eager pre-speech noises and taking any opportunity they can get to try out legs which only months ago seemed unimportant to their world. In a country where child under-nutrition is a silent emergency – the latest data indicates almost 2 million Lao citizens, mainly women and children, suffer some form of under-nutrition – these three bouncing, healthy children, are in stark relief to the figures. Why? All three have been taking the nutrition supplement Superkid as part of their diets.