ICA Fellow, Dafna Lemish, collaborates with UNICEF on child development initiative

June 20, 2012

Washington, DC - (June 18, 2012) Dafna Lemish (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale), a Fellow of the International Communication Association, has partnered with UNICEF to help launch and develop a free resource package available for worldwide use for the creation of quality media for children.

"How do you tell a child in South Africa his parent died of HIV/AIDS? It's important to develop communication that speaks to these children telling them they are not alone," said Barbara Kolucki, Co-author of the program and Consultant for Children's Media, UNICEF.

Based on Lemish's research--particularly her 2010 book, Screening Gender on Children's Television: The Views of Producers Around the World--she found that quality communication could improve children's lives.

"Fundamentally, my research and academic activity is grounded in my view that social scientists should also be involved in social-action research and creative work that develops academic knowledge as a resource for social change and engagement with the community-at-large," Lemish said.

Lemish, along with Kolucki, designed the resource pack on four principle guidelines: Age Appropriateness, Address Holistically, Strength Based, and Being All Encompassing. This expansive project includes its own website with clear guidelines, protocols, and samples of effective media for children. The works are meant to inspire to seek out the best use of communication tools for children.

"The vast majority of people with whom UNICEF works in the developing world have had little or no training in developing quality communication for children. This resource package is like a virtual 'master class' for them," said Kolucki. "My experience, along with my instincts, needed to be supported by the rigor of academic research and the vast amount of scholarly work in the field. Dafna was the perfect fit for this joint initiative,".
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All materials can be found www.unicef.org/cwc/index.html. The entire program is available for free as a PDF download on the site.

Contact: To schedule an interview with Dafna Lemish or Barbara Kolucki, please contact John Paul Gutierrez, jpgutierrez@icahdq.org.

About ICA

The International Communication Association is an academic association for scholars interested in the study, teaching, and application of all aspects of human and mediated communication. With more than 4,300 members in 80 countries, ICA includes 26 Divisions and Interest Groups and publishes the Communication Yearbook and five major, peer-reviewed journals: Journal of Communication; Communication Theory; Human Communication Research; Communication, Culture & Critique; and Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication. For more information, visit www.icahdq.org.

International Communication Association

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