Shujaaz wins an Emmy
1 April 2012
On 1 April 2012 Shujaaz
won the International Digital Emmy for children and young peoples content. Alan Duncan phoned DJ Bowie on Shujaaz
FM to say congratulations.
Rob Burnet, the social entrepreneur behind Shujaaz
"Every day we put a radio show which is syndicated across 23 Kenyan radio stations. Usually young Kenyan's phone us to talk about the ideas they have seen in one of the comics. This week things were a bit different - we had DFID minister, Alan Duncan, on the phone saying congratulation on our digital Emmy nomination. It was amazing"
Shujaaz is a Kenyan multiple media phenomena which produces 500,000
free monthly comic books, radio shows, a dedicated SMS interface, Facebook -a website and Shujaaz
.TV broadcast on YouTube.
means 'heroes' and first amongst them is DJ Boyie. Boyie is 19 and unemployed and, like all good comic book heroes, he has a secret. In the comic he hacks into FM radio stations and broadcasts Shujaaz
.FM. This story device helps to create a credible parallel universe and means the stories move seamlessly between print, radio and social media. It was this radio station that Minister Alan Duncan phoned.
Click to enlarge
The Minister had met the team behind Shujaaz
at the One World Media Awards
in London in May 2011. Alan Duncan MP
"I am a great fan of Shujaaz. I love their high spirits and enthusiasm. The idea for Shujaaz was a direct response to the post electoral violence in 2007. The founder, Rob Burnet, saw how young people had been manipulated by their leaders to do terrible things. He wanted to harness their energy in positive ways.
Winning an Emmy after just two years is an extraordinary achievement for the young team that produces Shujaaz. The UK government is proud to have played a role in helping establish this force for good."
RIU director, Ian Maudlin
"I like the fact that Shujaaz embraces new technology and social media. But really it works because the creative team understand the importance that stories play in helping to understand and make sense of our surroundings. Like Charles Dickens before them, the Shujaaz team understands the power of stories and that fiction can help to show us the greater truth. Neither Dickens nor Shujaaz shy away from the harsh realities of the lives of their characters. Rob Burnet summed this up perfectly in his DFID guest blog when he said 'don't romanticize, don't patronise.'"
Rob Burnet guest blog on DFID website
DFID press story
Ian Maudlin's Directors Update