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November 3, 2014
AWARDS: UNICEF Asia-Pacific Child Rights Award for TV
Front Row is this year’s Winner of the prestigious UNICEF Asia-Pacific Child Rights Award for Television.
Its winning documentary, Ulilang Lubos (Orphaned) follows the daily life of 10-year-old Princess, who has had to take care of three younger siblings since their mother abandoned them. Princess washes produce at a wet market to earn money. She receives five to 20 pesos for this.
After working the entire morning, Princess then proceeds to her second job: scavenging. She has to do this every day to feed herself and her siblings.
“I haven’t seen my mom since she left us three years ago,” Princess says. “We started scavenging to get some money and asking around for food. Sometimes we don’t have anything to eat and our stomachs hurt. We sleep on cardboard boxes on the floor. I envy my friends because they go to school but I don’t.”
Front Row: Ulilang Lubos was praised by the jurors for reflecting the world in their own eyes. “It was very effective,” they said. “There are many heartbreaking moments in this film. The interviews were handled with sensitivity and the three children came across as everyday kids. Their interaction during bath and meal times was very naturalistic, as if the cameras weren’t there. This is a powerful story that really captured the plight of these children.”