Hungarian university students highlight work of UNHCR section in video

News Stories, 16 May 2011

© UNHCR/B.Szandelszky
Organized by the Supply Management Service, UNHCR aid relief items are loaded onto an aircraft in Germany before being flow to the latest emergency.

BUDAPEST, Hungary, May 16 (UNHCR) UNHCR has been working with students at a Hungarian university to develop new and innovative videos on its logistics, procurement and emergency stockpile operations the results are impressive.

Sixteen groups of one or more students at Budapest's Moholy-Nagy Media Design University took part in a unique contest aimed at showcasing the work of UNHCR's Supply Management Service, which plays a vital role in the agency's worldwide operations.

Staff from UNHCR and the prestigious university had to judge 15 videos and one interactive game. "The choice was extremely difficult to make as all of the videos were positive, upbeat and refreshing," said Amin Awad, director of UNHCR's Department of Emergency, Security and Support.

But at a ceremony in Budapest last Friday, aspiring film-maker Adrian Costache was named as winner of the top prize. The 31-year-old, who was born in Romania, was presented with a trophy and a small cash award. His simple yet striking video shows how the SMS reacts quickly to an emergency.

One of the judges, UNHCR Senior Video Production Officer Edith Champagne, commended Costache for his "excellent use of visuals and numbers that you can follow to make a point." She also praised his editing and "story-like" structure.

The second and third-place finishers, Beatrix Simko and Andras Bodor, also picked up small cash awards that could help fund their creative work. An interview with a UNHCR supply officer as well as the interactive game received honourable mentions.

The overall standard of the entries was excellent, with the students adopting different approaches to the subject, including animation, a public service announcement and product promotion.

One student, Reka Jahoda, incorporated drawings and essays from refugee children at the Debrecen Reception Centre in eastern Hungary. She told UNHCR that she was "genuinely touched by the work of the children, mostly from Afghanistan and the Congo, who were happy to share their drawings."

The winning video will be used for promotional purposes at a supply conference in June and on World Refugee Day on June 20.

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The UN refugee agency is providing hundreds of tonnes of urgently needed relief supplies for victims in northern Pakistan. UNHCR is sending family tents, hospital tents, plastic sheeting, mattresses, kitchen sets, blankets and other items from its global stockpiles. Within a few days of the earthquake, just as its substantial local stocks were all but exhausted, UNHCR began a series of major airlifts from its warehouses around the world, including those in Denmark, Dubai, Jordan and Turkey.

UNHCR does not normally respond to natural disasters, but it quickly joined the UN humanitarian effort because of the sheer scale of the destruction, because the quake affected thousands of Afghan refugees, and because the agency has been operational in Pakistan for more than two decades. North West Frontier Province (NWFP), one of the regions most severely affected by the quake, hosts 887,000 Afghan refugees in camps.

While refugees remain the main focus of UNHCR's concern, the agency is integrated into the coordinated UN emergency response to help quake victims.

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UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador Angelina JoliePlay video

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