-- Микола Баграєв --

On September 25, the telethon “For Children for the Future” was broadcast live during the United News telethon on M1 TV channel, Kyivstar TV, TSN, 1+1 Facebook and YouTube, and Obozrevatel. This telethon is an initiative of the All-Ukrainian Charitable Tavria Foundation. We are discussing the idea of the telethon and its goals with the founder of Foundation Mykola Bagraiev.

– Mr. Bagraiev, how did you manage to achieve such a large-scale broadcast of the marathon For Children for the Future telethon?


– In this telethon, we raised significant issues related to the problems of children affected by the war. The fact that the country’s leading media supported this project is an indicator of its relevance and importance. I would like to thank the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, the management of the StarLightMedia holding, 1+1 media, and Obozrevatel for such wide coverage. Moreover, the screening and coverage of For Children for the Future telethon will continue on. You can watch us live on  October 1st on Novy Channel, and October 8th on the DOM TV channel, as well as keep an eye on a large number of materials on social networks.


– How did you come up with the idea of a telethon?


– From the first days of the full-scale invasion of the russian occupiers, we tried to monitor the location and updates of our Black Sea Games festival participants as much as possible. In fact, on February 21, we were supposed to announce the start of the competitive selection for the 19th festival. But for obvious reasons, we did not do so.


Having somewhat recovered from the enemy’s initial aggression and reformatted our media for martial law, our managers began to look for our young contestants and learn about their life turns. The children were scared but wanted to join the information and cultural resistance.


First, they recorded the Anthem of Ukraine from basements, shelters, and different locations in different countries, and we posted this video. Then there was the video “Close Our Sky” and the collaboration with Svitlana Tarabarova.


We realized that children need this activity, this creative realization, and started thinking about a large-scale project. That’s how we came up with the For Children for the Future telethon. Initially, we wanted to organize performances and even make a tour. But after analyzing all the security nuances and logistical problems, we settled on the telethon format. We kept the location and date of the filming a secret and planned additional filming and broadcasts for those who could not make it to the location. And we succeeded.


-In which way the children and stars were selected to participate in the telethon?


– We have a database of over 200 Black Sea Games participants. We wrote and called their parents and teachers. We found out about the physical possibility of participating in this project. This is how we came up with a list of 70 children who responded and confirmed their participation in the telethon. At the same time, the same work was done with adult artists. Once we had gathered the list, we started thinking about joint performances by children and stars. Thanks to online rehearsals and the decision of the artists and the Black Sea Games managers, duets were formed, and the viewers saw them live.


-Tell us frankly, did you manage to realize all the planned performances?


– No, we didn’t. Several performances were canceled due to personal circumstances changes of the potential participants. It was literally 5 performances. But we still managed to make 27.


– Did Tina Karol, NK, and Jerry Heil create the numbers online?


– Yes. We knew it was essential. The performances and plots of the telethon were filmed in 9 cities in Ukraine and 4 European countries. In the beginning, we were even afraid that there would be too many online performances. We wanted more live performances and live communication. And we have achieved this. I am very grateful to all the artists who joined For Children for the Future telethon. You have done a great thing – you have revitalized young artists and helped raise funds to help children affected by the war.