Making A Difference Award News Recipients

2014 Slumberland “Making A Difference” Award

Slumberland "Making a Difference" Award
Slumberland “Making a Difference” Award

The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Upper Midwest Chapter is proud to recognize excellence in video production and storytelling.  Our corporate partner, Slumberland, is all about making lives better.  To honor the spirit of both organizations, we present the Slumberland “Making a Difference” Award.  

Television & video has the power with one story to change one life.  That’s why many of us got into the industry.  This award honors the measurable changing of someone’s life or lives in our communities with one piece of video storytelling.  Nominations are accepted from the performing, creative, technical or administrative roles within the industry. Neither nominators nor nominees need to be members of NATAS.  This is a very special plaque award recipients will receive at the 2014 Upper Midwest Regional Emmy® Gala at Target Field in Minneapolis, MN on September 13th, 2014.

2014 Slumberland “Making A Difference” Award Recipient

Drowning is Silent – KMSP-TV

KMSP TV’s water safety campaign, “Drowning is Silent,” immediately addressed and continues to address a critical issue in communities across the region.

The Issue: Drowning is the number one killer of children under the age of four. In just the four months before the launch of this campaign three children drowned and one nearly drowned. That is one child a month. KMSP’s investigative unit, the FOX 9 Investigators, discovered a common thread: every child drowned or nearly drowned in plain sight. There were adults right there; they just didn’t recognize the signs of drowning.

The Campaign: KMSP-TV began with two innovative news stories. Reporter Trish Van Pilsum worked with a local swim school to put together a first of its kind demonstration. The story that resulted stunned even water safety experts and has changed the way parents watch their children at the pool. In the second story anchor Kelcey Carlson and her young son demonstrated three common mistakes parents make when playing with their children in the water. These mistakes actually can put kids at risk for drowning. Both of the stories remain prominently available on our website.

KMSP also printed posters to be hung at pools and beaches. They are bold and clear and remind parents that drowning is silent. It also reminds them to turn off their cell phones and watch their children. Because many of the drowning victims have come from within the immigrant communities, we are printing the posters in Somali and Spanish as well.

KMSP TV also has produced and begun airing a public service announcement reinforcing the same messages. The traffic and sales department has committed to airing it during times of the day when families are watching.

The Impact:  The drowning demonstration story has gone viral. At the time of this writing it has been shared via the station’s Facebook page alone more than 300,000 times. More importantly, it has made a difference.

Water safety organizations such as the Hennepin County Water Patrol, Minnesota Swims and the Abbey’s Hope Foundation heralded the campaign as ground breaking and are showing the story to groups.

Requests for copies of the stories and the posters have come from public and private pools, schools, swimming programs, even instructors who train lifeguards in places as far away as Texas and New Jersey.