Digital Journalism Literacy and Community
Letter From CEO- Servant
After 20 plus years strategic consulting for IT firms on learning and product programs I was impacted deeply by Dr. Joni Schwartz work in launching the Downtown Learning Center in Brooklyn and with the work of Bridgeport Rescue Mission in the hood of Bridgeport CT. In 2003 I moved into the Bridgeport Rescue Mission to live with men transitioning through the 18 month New Life program. By the end of nine months eating sleeping living with the men in both the Bridgeport and Albany missions a group of pastors sent me to Zambia in a 10,000 acre mission with 50 farms, clinics, schools and orphanages. Since then my life is filled with wonderful people doing amazing work and clear idea that my perceptions of the trauma of poverty from a person living in an entitled world were most entirely false.
What I can share with you about poverty is that the academic theory behind it is way of base. Poverty is a state of daily trauma, desperation and humiliating and few people on the entitlement side of reality understand. In many way entitlement does not want to understand because it would be to painful a view. While our lives of entitlement scaffold on steps of success, poverty in contrast cascades downward out of control into desperation. Concepts of transformation and Sustainable Development Goals must realize that programs like Common Core and intellectual theories such as Relativeness or Reflection Transformation are built for entitlement cultures and not solutions for the poor. Traumatized people need a completely new positive experience of life and the opportunity to have a way out., the very things they are denied. The very frameworks of how they perceive life must transform before any reflective processes will deliver the right result.
Ironically the education theory of the masters such John Dewey, Edward Lindeman, Paulo Freire and Malcolm Knowles are now being realized with the methods of Project Based Learning and Distributive Intelligence. My personal work on the development of Global Learning Framework, Personal Learning Framework and Transformation Learning were designed to bridge the gap between education theories and field methods. How we actually learn collaboratively as a human race now armed with a global knowledge base must be embraced by the fields of learning. Democratic global collaborative learning is vastly different than authoritarian one-to-many models of education publishers and eLearning. Perhaps why the collaborative applications such as Google are massively scalable and sustainable while academic MOOCs deliver a dismal 4% completion rate.
Learning and transformation are social processes. They always have been. Learning is a social process since the cave child learned to hunt, the apprenticeship of stone cutters built cathedrals to placing a man on the moon. Learning is a contextual collaborative social experience.
When I launched the digital storytelling portal “I am Africa. This is my story…” we needed a fast way for African youth to tell their story in one class. They all have seen interviews and played with cell phones so we came up with a simple interview script. The workshops were filled with excitement because African youth knew what to do and every student had their story. All we had to do was provide the platform to share with some guidance. Phase two of the “I-am the story…” will take a look how any youth can be a journalist by taking an issue that has meaning to them and making a statement.
With this upgraded site we will provide training to youth groups, schools, NGO and even press to mentor a youth to make a statement online. We will set up a sister channel to “I am Africa. This my story” for those videos to be placed, simply called “I am the Story…”
On this site you will find the materials for telling your life story and basic journalism for telling a story on one of UN’s Human Rights.
While we still seek funding to do these workshops in African for teachers and NGO leaders we can not wait any longer for a grant, so we will do what we can online grass roots style. If you wish to contact me with ideas of partnership, support or target location feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Richard C. Close
CEO – Servant
Chrysalis Campaign, Inc.