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NGO - Media

TVE Asia Pacific:

Moving Images, Moving People
"Children of Tsunami" documentary represents children effected in Asia Pasific.
Indonesia, Yenni lost family

The Asia Pacific -- spanning from Afghanistan to Kiribati, and from Japan to New Zealand -- is the world's largest geographical region, and home to 60% of humanity, including most of its poor. It's a highly diverse and dynamic region where television, video, VCD and DVD media reach out to the far corners, even in the most remote areas. There are more

television viewers in the 60+ countries of the Asia Pacific than anywhere else in the world. New information and communication technologies -- such as mobile phones and Internet --are slowly but steadily rolling out. As the region's media penetration increases, it opens up huge opportunities for using these media for public education and information on sustainable development and social justice issues. TVE Asia Pacific responds to this timely need.

Asia Pacific - Sri Lanka

Television for Education - Asia Pacific

In the mid 1990s, the Asia Pacific region was experiencing a communications boom fuelled by economic liberalisation, technological advancement and market deregulation. Evidence of this was found in:

- new TV channels starting up;
- FM frequencies licensed to private operators;
- commercial Internet connectivity introduced;
- mobile phones becoming available and affordable; and
- VCD and DVD formats fast replacing VHS tapes.

TVE Asia Pacific (TVEAP) was founded in 1996 by a group of communications specialists and development professionals who asked: how can these communications technologies and public media be used to enrich lives, livelihoods and human society everywhere in our region?

To overcome the barriers of language, culture and literacy, the organisation’s focus was set on moving images - in various forms such as television, video and movies. As the new media evolved, we have extended our work to also cover the Internet and World Wide Web.

Our approach in all media remains: moving images moving people!

Sri Lanka - Theeban dropped out of school after tsunami. India - Mala with her neighbors.

What we do

TVE Asia Pacific uses television, video and Internet to raise awareness on sustainable development and social justice issues. It is a regional organisation that engages the entire Asia Pacific region.

Working closely with television broadcasters, civil society groups and educational organisations, TVEAP tells authentic and engaging stories of how individuals, communities and countries work for better lives and a better planet. Through co-productions, programme distribution, training and regional media forums, TVE Asia Pacific brings together TV networks, independent film-makers, educators and activists in the public interest. TVEAP implements activities covering five broad areas:

· Producing regionally relevant new content for television and online outlets
· Distributing, locally adapting and promoting international content for regional and national audiences
· Strengthening the capacity of television professionals through training courses

TVE Asia Pacific:

A regional non-profit organisation using audio-visual and new media to raise awareness on sustainable development and social justice

· Consulting on information, education and communications (IEC) policy and strategies
· Networking and participating in regional and global forums for sustainable development and social justice.

All TVEAP materials are journalistically produced on an editorially independent basis. They are meant for non-technical and non-specialist audiences, and are comparable to Discovery Channel programming. The output is in English and a growing number of Asian languages.

TVEAP works in the sub-regions of East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and the Pacific. As yet, the Central Asian countries are not engaged. Two recent projects illustrate the multi-country, multi-media approach adopted by TVEAP.

Children of Tsunami: Rebuilding the Future

Two brothers lost both family, Sri Lanka

This was our main response to the Asian Tsunami. Starting in January 2005, we had local camera crews tracking the personal recovery s tories of 8 Tsunami affected families in 4 countries – India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Thailand. This was done through monthly, repeat visits. Stories were led by surviving children aged between 8 and 16. This coverage resulted in 5-min month video reports on each child/family that were placed o nline, a 50-min documentary released on the first anniversary of the disaster, a dedicated website, and on-going public outreach and dissemination of this material which will continue until 2007. This project gave a voice to the affected families, and also highlighted sociological, economic, ecological and other issues that warranted wider discussion during the recovery process.

Synopsis of the documentary:
Children of Tsunami:
The Journey Continues

Tailand - Having lost both parents, Bao, turns bread winner.

They have never met each other. Some have never travelled beyond their native village. They all belong to statistically average families in their communities. Five girls and three boys - aged 8 to 16 -- living in coastal areas of India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Thailand. Each family was hit by the Asian Tsunami of December 2004. Some lost their loved ones; or their homes; or their belongings. Many found their livelihoods gone and families rendered destitute.

As they cope with the many challenges of rebuilding their shattered lives and livelihoods, the Children of Tsunami tell us their personal stories of anguish and survival, courage and resilience. These testimonies are a mirror that reflects the long and arduous journey back to normalcy for millions of Asians affected by one of the worst natural disasters of all time. Along the way, we also probe what happened to the massive volume of donations the world pledged to help the survivors.

TVE Asia Pacific commissioned locally based film-makers in each country to keep revisiting these families every month for most of 2005. In this documentary, we compile the highlights and lowlights of our featured children – as well as their families and communities - in what was Asia's longest year.

Their journey is far from over.

Duration: 48 mins
Year of production: 2005
Countries filmed in: India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Thailand
In each country, a locally based production crew carried out filming for TVE Asia Pacific.
Produced by: TVE Asia Pacific,
For more information, visit:

Heshani is studying her homework at the shelter

Localising Hands On
in Asia

This 2-year project localised and disseminated a set of internationally made video and print material (called Hands On) on practical solutions to development problems. The material was versioned and distributed in 4 countries: Cambodia, India, Laos and Nepal. Implemented through a national partner in each country, this project involved the voice dubbing of video and translation of background text information. Their dissemination was done through mobile video screenings, VCD distribution and national broadcasts in each country spread over a year. The project was supported by Toyota Environmental Activities Grant Programme of Japan.

Power of Partnership

Partnerships are crucial for TVE Asia Pacific’s engagement of the vast region.

These partners are drawn from broadcast, educational, civil society and development sectors.

A large number of terrestrial, cable and satellite TV broadcasters regularly carry programmes distributed by TVE Asia Pacific.

Many also participate in training courses and other regional events organised by TVEAP.

Distribution, promotion and outreach tasks are shared by national partne r organisations

-- NGOs or companies engaged in producing and/or distributing audio visual material on development issues for education, awareness, advocacy, training or activist purposes. Partners are licensed to distribute TVE content, and supported through a competitive catalytic grants scheme. Map shows countries where TVEAP has one or more partners.

Thematic partnerships have been formed with regional organisations, UN agencies, research institutes and universities.

Who we are

TVEAP is registered as a non-stock, non-profit company in Sri Lanka, and governed by an international Board of Directors.

The TVE Asia Pacific Board comprises eight directors who possess a vast amount of expertise and experience in areas as diverse as development communication, television production, broadcasting, investigative journalism, educational technology, public communication of science and technology, environmental education, corporate governance and community leadership. See list at:

TVE Asia Pacific’s core strength is its dynamic team working at its headquarters in Colombo, Sri Lanka. As at March 2006, the TVEAP Team comprised 12 full time staff members and 1 overseas intern. TVEAP team members come from diverse backgrounds of mass communication, journalism, photography, project management, finance, administration and information technology. The organisation is headed by Director/CEO Nalaka Gunawardene, an award winning science journalist and communications specialist who has wide experience working with national, regional and international organisations for nearly 20 years.

The work of TVEAP is supported by development donors and corporate sponsors in Asia Pacific, Europe and North America.

Our thematic coverage: we give you the world!

TVE Asia Pacific's unique resource is its catalogue containing several hundred hours of outstanding TV programmes and video films made to international broadcast standards. These are available -- in documentary, drama, animation, TV spot and other formats -- to broadcasters and others users without a license fee. This makes TVEAP's programmes accessible to developing country TV stations, NGOs, universities and schools, many of who cannot afford commercially available content.

The catalogue covers the full spectrum of sustainable development, including:

· HIV/AIDS · Biodiversity conservation · Environmental quality · Pollution control · Environmental healthOzone layer depletion · Global climate change · Desertification · Food and nutrition · Forests and people · Freshwater management · Ocean resources · Coastal resources · Community development · Human rights · Renewable energy · Human settlements · Indigenous people · Population issues · Poverty reduction · Recycling and reusing · Refugees and migration · Science and technology · Trade and environment · Literacy and education · Sustainable agriculture · Sustainable consumption · Urbanisation · Waste management · Gender & development · Wildlife management · Science and technology · ICTs and development · Disaster management · Globalisation

TVEAP's television broadcast partners in the Asia Pacific

During the past decade, TVE Asia Pacific has developed partnerships with local, national and regional television broadcasters in over two dozen countries in the Asia Pacific region. Many of these broadcasters have benefited from TVE Asia Pacific’s subsidised TV programme distribution to developing countries (where international standard programming on sustainable development are provided without charging a license fee). Producers or managers from some of these TV stations or networks have participated in national, sub-regional or regional level training courses or media roundtables organised by TVE Asia Pacific. As a result of these and other contact, TVE Asia Pacific is able to mobilise substantial broadcast involvement covering both state owned public broadcasters as well as privately owned commercial stations. Listed here are some of the more prominent broadcast partners.

Ariana TV
Fiji One Television
Sistem Televisyen malaysia BHD, TV3
Channel News Asia (CNA) – regional English news and current affairs channel
Bangladesh Television (BTV)
Channel I
Eskuhey Television
International Television Channel (NTV)

Kairali Television, Kerala state
New Delhi Television (NDTV)
Star News
Sun TV, Tamil Nadu
Zee News
Mongolia Radio and Television (MRTV)
Sri Lanka

Independent Television Network (ITN)
Sirasa TV/Maharaja Broadcasting (MTV)
Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation (SLRC)
Bhutan Broadcasting Service (BBS)
Metro Television
RCTI Jakarta
Trans TV Jakarta
Nepali Television (NTV)
Metro Image Channel
Kantipur Television

Nation Broadcasting Corporation
Channel 11

Radio and Television Brunei (RTB)
NHK national public television
New Zealand
Vietnam Television VTV
Vietnam Television VTV
Apsara Television
Channel 21/Cambodian Television Network
National Television of Cambodia (TVK)
YTN Networks, South Korea
Pakistan Television (PTV)
PTV World satellite channel
Sharlimar Television Network (STN)
Geo TV
Beijing Television (BTV)
China Educational Television (CETV)
China Central Television (CCTV)
Radio and Television Hong Kong (RHTK)
Lao Television (central and provincial channels)
ABS-CBN Network

For Profile of Nalaka GUNAWARDENE

TVE Asia Pacific website:
Nalaka Gunawardene's article that touches on it for GreenCross International's The Optimist magazine>
You can see N. Gunawardene's views on the tsunami and communications rights at:

TVE Asia Pacific
Moving Images, Moving People
Generic email: <>

Summer 2006
Issue# 18
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