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UK - Olympics Inc - 19 min 15 sec [30 July 2012]

Londoners protest over commercialisation of Olympics

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With the Olympics in full swing, the overwhelming dominance of major multinational corporate sponsors are raising questions about the power that companies such as Coca-Cola and McDonald's exert over the Games.
The 2012 London Olympics has been labelled the costliest Games ever; a sporting spectacular with the tightest security operation in the UK since World War Two, driven by multi-million dollar sponsorship. "It's not in the spirit of sport and healthy competition, it is in the spirit of making as much money as possible", says one protestor, Lindsey German. Organisers say they need the money from the big corporate sponsors to run the Games, but many feel that the heavy-handed bullying by the Olympics organisers to protect their corporate backers threatens the smaller companies that have also contributed. A staggering 75,000 small British firms who designed, built and supplied material for the Olympic site are banned from publicising their involvement. To use their Olympics contribution to promote themselves, they must pay the Olympics a fee. "They say the Olympics is about sustaining and supporting communities, but they are actually demolishing our community".

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UK - Rwanda's Warm Welcome - 12 min 43 sec [30 July 2012]

Olympic spirit inspires surge in charity donations

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Everyone is watching their nations strive for success in the London Olympics. But away from the hype, small English towns are playing host to the different teams, experiencing some unlikely cultural exchanges.
For some, the Olympics are about nations competing against one another. Not for the people of Bury St Edmunds. In this small Suffolk village residents have welcomed the Rwandan team with open arms. "To actually hear and learn about Rwanda, East Africa, the culture; it's really special to us", says local teacher, Rob Walden. Hosting the team for their pre-Olympics training, the town has captured the true spirit of the Games by rallying around their guests, even going on to raise over $25,000 for sports equipment in Rwandan schools. "From the moment we stepped into this town we felt at home", athlete Linda Kalimba smiles.

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Norway - Mourning a Massacre - 6' min 05'' sec [25 July 2012]

Breivik defence warns Norway to prepare for return to society

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One year ago horror struck a quiet Norwegian island, as Anders Breivik gunned down 77 teenagers. This moving report looks at one Kurdish family's experience and how they’ve coped with the aftermath of the tragedy.
"She wanted to be a journalist, or a lawyer. But she didn't get the chance", Bano's mother cries. Bano Rashid and her sister were both camping on Utoya when Anders Breivik went on his horrifying killing spree. Whilst her sister managed to escape, Bano was shot and killed. "Bano's funeral was a nice symbol of multiculturalism. It showed we can all live together", her father says proudly. Yet whilst the community have rallied around Bano's family, nothing can ease the pain of watching her classmates graduate, without their daughter there. "We went through so much. We are still."

For more information on this story from The Guardian click here
The Guardian

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Lebanon - Ping Pong Dreams (HD) - 7 min 30 sec [30 July 2012]

Meet the family taking Lebanese ping pong to London

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Tucked away in a corner of Beirut, an Armenian family is preparing for the Olympics. In this charming film they show us how their obsession with ping pong has taken them from their small shop to the big Games.
"The electricity has gone again", dedicated father Raffi laughs, as his ping pong obsessed family prepare for their biggest challenge yet: taking eldest daughter Tvine to the London Olympics. With no national sponsorship and a shop to run, it has been a struggle."We didn't expect anything from anybody. We do it ourselves." Can Tvine achieve her family's dream of success?
Zeina AH

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