Call for Africa’s Media to support youth to create "mini documentaries”

The campaign “I am Africa. This is my story…” sponsored by UNESCO Power of Peace Network will open up a new category (YouTube Playlist) for African Youth to display their media projects call Mini-Documentaries.

Over 100 African media organizations, independent writers and production teams have contacted “I am Africa. This is my story…”  about the timely need to both listen and provide a platform for African youth to display their works independent of any organization. Last week a youth (Jeff Mohammed) Kenya blew us away some Mini-Documentaries from the slums of Kenya.

Media community youth now have a social community and YouTube platform to educate and display African youth (under 35) on Mini-Documentaries that show the positive qualities of a day-in-the-life of African youth.

Mini-Documentaries provide a way, with social media, for anyone with even a cell phone camera to document the life of African work and daily living. It empowers African youth to tell Africa’s stories through their eyes without extensive budgets and crews. It is also an educational and empowerment program that any organization can leverage for their own benefit. It is a tool to speak out that every African youth should possess.

This came about after viewing Jeff Mohammed’s work in the Kenya slums, also what people like Hot Sun are doing. We are challenged that there must be many youth on staff in African media organizations (we are talking about your staff) that given a simple piece of technology and access to the internet can both display their talent and the determined spirit of Africa we all know, but the international press seems to ignore.

Here is how you can join us in encouraging your media teams to tell their personal stories and the day-in-the-life Mini Documentaries stories around them.

Step 1. Simply join the educational social community “I am Africa. This is my story…”

Step 2. Invite members of your team to set up their personal page that will help promote their work. These pages are searchable through Google.

Step 3. Approach local schools and Youth organizations to use this program to prove and engage youth in the democracy and freedom of the press they have a right to.

Step 4. Be a guide/mentor to make sure the project is finished and posted online. Use the guide at How to TELL a digital story on YouTube.pdf

Step 5. Upload the video into the “I am Africa. This is my story…” community.

Step 6. Promote your video as local news from the streets.

Note: Unlike the training guide for life story telling, Mini-documentary are more flexible and with creator creative license. It could even be a music video. Our only guideline is that it is positive and encouraging. Our concern is not to be best piece of cinema, our concern is empowering as many youth as possible with a voice.

If you want to do something really fun: We have a download workshop that we deliver in high schools and colleges that in 30 minute teaches youth about the power of social media. In the workshop students have hands on experience by the class producing their own digital stories on their lives. You can see the result on the Lesotho and Zambia play lists in the campaigns Youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/ThisIsMyStoryAfrica#p/p Essentially the class has a chance to play news reporter. If you do this both you and the student will have a day to remember, both of you will walk away with a deep appreciation of the African spirit.

From a professional and deeply personal level I would highly recommend you joining us in this cause. This is campaign that has come at the right time for youth to have their voice and for you to see the significance and power in the skills you have to liberate Africa. Help Africa tell the real story.

If we can help with any type of guidance feel free to contact me personally at rclose@richardclose.info

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