Activists from Colombia, Kenya, Bolivia and Madagascar kicked off the first panel of the day. The panelists described the organizations and/or projects they are working on or recently created. For a video trailer on the projects, please click here.
Repacted is a youth that uses community theatre to educate other youths in Nakuru, Kenya. Skits are performed in prisons and IDP camps. The group trains youths to perform their own skits. Collins Odor, who is behind the initiative now has a blog, which you can visit here. When we asked him how we could help, he said having someone come to Nakuru to volunteer and train them on IT for a week or two would be very useful. Also, sponsoring performances would be very helpful. So please contact him!
“The ability to speak out is directly related to happiness,” says Catalina Restrepo, who is closely engaged in the HiperBarrio’ project. Catalina may be young, but she is an absolutely formidable woman.
The project began as two separate proposals both from Medellín, Colombia. Juliana Rincón and Jorge Montoya proposed to organize a series of new media training workshops in collaboration with an outreach initiative of Medellín’s public library system. Álvaro Ramírez wanted to host a blogging workshop in the working class neighborhood of La Loma de San Javier. In the end, both project decided to work together and form the HiperBarrio outreach collective.
Mialy Andriamanjara of FOKO Madagascar presented her project.
FOKO wants to help Madagascar by bringing the world’s attention to Malagasy people. When often biodiversity and lemurs are in the spotlight, FOKO wants to focus on the Malagasy people and make them a crucial factor in their unique and threatened environment. FOKO’s goal is to help the Malagasy people improve their quality of life without destroying the Forest while taking into account biodiversity.
FOKO has opened 150 blogs in just 10 months. A small stipend is offered to bloggers who have their stories published in the country’s national newspapers. They’ve held the first reading of the ‘Vagina Monologues’ in Malagasy, with the help of Malagasy female bloggers. Kids in Madagascar have realized they have something interesting to say and now they know how. The group is hoping to set up their own Internet cafe to facilitate their work and promote the crafts of Malagasy woman.
Bolivia is a deeply divided country, where the differences are accentuated. But well known Bolivian bloggers Mario Duran, Hugo Miranda, and Eduardo Ávila believe that improved communication can lead to greater understanding. The pilot program of Voces Bolivianas took place at a cyber-cafe in the city of El Alto between September 22 and November 10. They are now continuing their citizen media workshops in Santa Cruz, El Alto, and other locations throughout the country.
Cristina launched her blog in English to write about indigenous peoples and to write about events in El Alto. There are few people blogging about indigenous topics and few indigenous women are blogging. She is also uploading her own videos and her own pictures. In this way, she seeks to make people and people visible. Some of the more challenging moments occur when Cristina faces technical difficulties. She also gets