CHICAM Project

CHICAM was an 'action research' project funded by the European Commission (Framework 5 Programme) and co-ordinated by the Centre for the Study of Children, Youth and Media at the Institute of Education, University of London. The aim was to use media production and exchange as a research tool through which refugee and migrant children could represent their experiences of peer relations, school, family and intercultural communication through new media. In the context of increasing global migration, the rapid development of new communication technologies and concern about the specific needs of children these research areas were chosen because they represent key areas of policy concern for Europe.

We set up six media clubs for refugee and migrant children (ages 10-14) in six European countries. The clubs met weekly after school hours over a year with some extra full days during school holidays. The clubs made videos and exchanged them on the internet. In each participating country, researchers and media educators employed by the project collaborated with youth workers and teachers, already working with the children. The clubs became social centres as well as a place to learn about and make media. Using the internet we established a communications network to facilitate the sharing of children's media productions, in order to generate dialogues between them.