H2Ooooh! is a new international initiative, devised by Gruppo Alcuni in collaboration with the UNESCO Venice Office, regarding cartoons based on the theme of water, to promote scientific knowledge and more sustainable behaviour among young people worldwide.
In a first phase which took place over three consecutive school years between 2008-2010, a pilot project involved over 6.000 children from all over Italy. It was geared towards all teachers open to participating in a creative activity on the theme of water with their Primary or early Secondary school classes. The goal was to get children to create a storyboard (or in other words a series of drawings representing the main scenes of a cartoon) with the aim of increasing awareness among young people on the theme of water and the issues related to its use, to its exploitation and to its limited supply
The project on one hand allows children to learn about the language of animated cartoons, on the other hand it also encourages a greater understanding of an extremely important issue which is the situation of water resources in our world today.
From the over 700 storyboards received at that time, 26 were selected and transformed into short 1 minute animated films. The cartoons were created by professional animators using the children's original drawings and were broadcast on Rai Due in May and June of 2010 (27% of broadcasting shares!). Since then, UNESCO contributed to their wider dissemination in various regions of the world, and made them available also on the web.
The extraordinary success of this initiative among Italian children, obvious from the enthusiastic participation of so many schools and from the quality of the materials sent by over 500 classes, inspired the decision to propose the project to other UNESCO member States with the aim of promoting it on an international level and with the objective of creating at least another 26 cartoons in as many different countries.
The idea of extending, in a second phase, the H2Ooooh! initiative to the rest of the world was presented in Paris, during the UNESCO General Conference in late October 2010 and its promotion worldwide was started in Spring 2011 (with numerous contacts already giving their support in Asia, in the Arab States, in Europe and in Latin America).
Field Offices and national bodies of UNESCO present in these countries will be closely involved; they will work in close collaboration with the Broadcasters and partners who have agreed to take part in the initiative, disseminating information about the initiative, collecting and selecting the best storyboards from their country/region, contributing to the production and broadcasting of the new series of cartoons.
The more countries that participate, the more it will be possible to have a global vision of this theme. The winning groups of children will be invited to the 2013 Ciak Junior Festival.
So please go through the information kit to know more about how to participate in this exciting endeavour, and go to the news section to discover how the initiative develops in various parts of the world. Have a look at the storyboards of the cartoons already created, and share your views and experiences with fellows from all participating countries around the world, and HAVE FUN!