Katrina kids turn into digital filmmakers

After attending digital summer camps, Gulf Coast youth debut their films at film festival and wind up with TV gigs.

Some say that adversity can breed creativity. That's exactly what Gulf Coast kids found when they attended Digital Arts Summer Camps to script, edit and shoot their own digital films of their Katrina experiences.

The results of this newfound creativity are being shown at the Mobile Learning Institute Gulf Coast Film Festival, eSchool News reports.

The Pearson Foundation, the philanthropic branch of educational publisher Pearson Inc., in conjunction with Nokia Inc., provided the funding for the kids affected by the disaster to chronicle their experiences.

At the Film Festival, student film makers learned that the National Geographic Channel and the Smithsonian Network have plans to share these films with a national audience. The films will be broadcast on National Geographic on Demand beginning in September, and they'll air on the Smithsonian Network later this year.

"These are amazing films," said Lisa Ling, a correspondent for the National Geographic Channel and host of the Aug. 28 event. "And these are absolutely amazing young people. They've helped report the impact Hurricane Katrina continues to have on their communities and in their own lives. In the process, they've demonstrated how important it is for people all over the United States to continue to care about the residents of the Gulf Coast."

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