(From left) Michael and Saffuan in a group photo with officials from the Malaysian Embassy in Tokyo and Panasonic, as well as the team members from SMK Batu Lintang.
MIRI: SK Long Sepiling in upper Baram won the grand prize at the finale of ‘Kid Witness News’ (KWN) – a global hands-on video education programme involving school children, in Tokyo, Japan recently.
Teacher-in-charge Muhammad Saffuan Jaffar said their five-minute video entitled ‘The Power of Hands’ clinched the ‘Best Storytelling Award’.
The production team comprises teachers Saffuan and Mohd Fadli Abd Salam, and pupils Fiona Fredick, Anilov Fabien Tingang and Juwita Ulean. Michael Nyamun represented his schoolmates in Tokyo.
“I am overjoyed with our achievement. I almost couldn’t believe that SK Long Sepiling – a remote school in Sarawak with very low enrolment – emerged the winner, beating teams from 18 countries including host Japan, Canada and China,” said Saffuan, who is still in Tokyo.
He added among other countries participating were Hong Kong, Tanzania and Malaysia’s Asean neighbours Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam. Saffuan also took the opportunity to thank his school and also Panasonic Malaysia for giving them the opportunity to unleash their talent and creativity through the video.
“Being the winner, at both national and international levels, proves that with proper guidance by teachers and trainers, the rural students too can unleash their potential and creativity.
“This experience also gives all participants the opportunity to travel and explore Tokyo,” he said.
Saffuan said besides SK Long Sepiling, a team from SMK Batu Lintang in Kuching also represented Malaysia in the secondary school category. The Kuching team produced their short film entitled ‘Paralympian’.
However, they did not win any prize.
The national-level ‘Panasonic Malaysia KWN’ was held last November, which garnered a total of 19 video submissions by 76 students from 19 schools. Of the total, 12 videos were shortlisted.
According to Panasonic Malaysia, the KWN programme jointly run with the Ministry of Education, is an annual video education programme for primary and secondary students.
More than 180,000 children around the world have participated in the programme since it was first held in the US in 1989. In 2004, the contest went global with the addition of an international category.