Cathrine Ertmann (Danish School of Journalism)
Award of Excellence
Domestic Picture Story
As a part of the scandinavian welfare model, Denmark is recognised and admired in the rest of the world. But Denmark has no poverty line, defining the minimum level of income deemed necessary to achieve an adequate standard of living. One of the consequences is lacking political attention, due to the fact that there is no consensus regarding what it takes to be poor.
Christmas 2009 Danish Salvation Army got more applications asking for economic aid than ever before. 9400 families applied, that's 30 percent more than 2008.
Here is one of them.
Tina is retired due to her poor physical condition. She lives with her husband Frans and their four children in the countryside.
Lukas is the youngest of the four. The family can't afford him to go to football practice.
Friday night. Lukas has dinner in his and his brother Zean's room. Patrick is controlling the television. Their sister Michaella is visiting their grandparents.
Lukas is using his brother's PlayStation, as a reward for changing the sheets on the bed.
Michaella hopes to get a memory card and a robot-dog this Christmas. "It's not really about the presents," she says, "it's about being together."
Michaella is 14 years old. She says she feels different from the other kids. When they tease her, she asks them "what is normal?"
Tina had her first ride when she was three. She wanted to become a vet assistant, but had to stop the education, because of her increasing bad physical condition.
Denmark has a population of 5.5 mil. The number of kids who live in relative poverty has increased 11,000-12,000 since 2001.