Participants from around the world gathered at Wheelock College for a weekend of education and advocacy, and a celebration of community and CCFC’s determination to reclaim childhood from corporate marketers. The summit kicked off with CCFC’s presentation of the Fred Rogers Integrity Award to Annie Leonard, creator and host of the Internet film sensation, The Story of Stuff. Annie was honored for inspiring millions of young people to explore the links between consumerism and environmental degradation.
Friday featured presentations and breakout sessions on a number of topics, including the role of marketing in childhood obesity; the impact of commercial culture on children in Sweden (where advertising to children under 12 years old is banned); and the effects of materialistic values on children’s happiness and wellbeing. Friday also included the presentation of the Commercial-Free World of Children Award to Dr. Alvin F. Poussaint.
Saturday’s highlights included breakout sessions on living mindfully to challenge consumerism; confronting the problems of marketing to diverse youth; challenging the corporate myth a free speech right to marketing to kids; and a hilarious keynote presentation by Lenore Skenazy about raising “free range kids” in a commercial culture.