SOURCE: Friends of Thai Daughters

November 14, 2006 11:00 ET

Child Trafficking Documentary Wins Artivist Film Festival Award

LOS ANGELES, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- November 14, 2006 -- "Daughters and Sons - Preventing Child Trafficking in the Golden Triangle," a poignant documentary about Nobel Prize nominee Sompop Jantraka's fight against child sex trafficking in the Thailand region, has won the best short film award in the child advocacy category at the 3rd Artivist Film Festival, November 9-12, 2006.

Opening with a pedophile who describes sex with a 10-year-old girl as "just the way it is here," the film documents a problem of shocking proportions; UNICEF estimates that over one million children are trafficked each year, the majority into sex slavery and prostitution, by traffickers who promise jobs as waitresses or maids in distant cities, to children of destitute village families. Instead, girls as young as five years old are confined to brothels where they may be forced to service up to 20 men per day, at risk of contracting HIV/AIDS or other diseases.

Created and directed by award-winning filmmaker Sarah Feinbloom, "Daughters and Sons" also documents the hope and opportunity that Sompop offers through his organization, Development and Education Program for Daughters and Communities (DEPDC). By providing free education and permanent shelter to at risk children, DEPDC has helped prevent thousands of children from succumbing to the sex industry or other exploitative child labor situations.

"We are thrilled 'Daughters and Sons' received this award," says Jane McBride, co-founder of Friends of Thai Daughters, the U.S.-based nonprofit anti-trafficking organization that produced the documentary. "We hope the film will help draw international attention to the devastating problem of child trafficking."

The documentary tells the stories of several girls and boys who live at the DEPDC center, including 13-year-old Kai. Kai's mother, a prostitute, died of AIDS, and her sister had already gone to work in the city. Kai would have undoubtedly followed had it not been for the DEPDC volunteers who found her.

A clip from "Daughters and Sons" can be viewed on: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I36fJTQx9yE

Previous winners in the Artivist Festival's child advocacy category include "Born into Brothels," the groundbreaking documentary by the nonprofit organization Kids with Cameras, that went on to win Emmy and Oscar awards.

Friends of Thai Daughters (www.friendsofthaidaughters.org) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting children from sex trafficking through financial support of community-based prevention centers such as DEPDC.

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