After more than a year in the making, the Mapping Our Voices for Equality project is just a few short weeks away from launching! Please click on www.mappingvoices.org after October 20th, when our website goes live. We'll be featuring over seventy stories produced by local community members in English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Mandarin, and Cantonese about healthy eating, active living, and tobacco prevention. Or join us in person when we take MOVE on the road, showing our stories and the maps of changes we've made in our neighbhorhoods to local decision-makers. Contact us if you have any questions!
After our getting our feet wet this spring in conducting virtual trainings, we're launching another series with HP's Office for Global Social Innovation this October. In the meantime, we've been experimenting with other platforms and models for virtual workshops. In fact, we're finding this approach so effective that we're hoping to launch open virtual workshops in early 2012 for individuals and organizations interested in community digital storytelling who can't make it to one of our in-person workshops. Interested? Get in touch!
I recently returned to the Hopland Band of Pomo Indians in Hopland, CA to do a follow-up training with the group there on Solid Waste Management Stories and was surprised to find that almost everyone from the original training returned to create another story. I was even more happy (in a bittersweet way) to see that despite my mental and material preparation, they really didn't need me all that much this time around. Our Train-the-Trainer models work best that way, we've found, when we start out with an intensive production workshop, and then during subsequent visits, step back a little more each time as former participants step up and take the lead as "coaches" and develop ways to make the process their own. Since Tasha and I share a history as Community Organizers and Adult Education Instructors, firmly rooted in the Participatory Education Model, we carry the "Iron Rule" into our work as consultants (and parents!): "Don't do for others what they can do for themselves." Theories aside, the new batch of stories were insightful, compelling and artfully done in ways that I couldn't have expected. And the group gained a stronger level of technical confidence by coaching each other through the process.
The ten stories that were created through this project all touch upon the Tribe's need to deal with trash dumping in their community. It affects the environment, it affects the traditional food sources and it affects the long-term health of the community. The goal is to not only show them periodically to community members during monthly "Movie Nights" to start a dialogue locally, but to also show them in January at a National EPA conference to raise awareness of the urgency of this issue in their lives. Check out Ben's Story on our site to see an example.
Every time I meet a new community and listen to authentic stories told creatively and from the heart about issues that are important to them, my life is touched too. It's impossible in this kind of work, I think, to not be affected. This topic really hit home for me, though and I'm grateful for these lessons brought to light by our friends in Hopland.
"We didn’t always live in the right places and we couldn’t always afford the right foods. But there’s always an opportunity for change."
Speaking Truth to Prevention, by Devon Love.
Biking across that finish line.
Can someone go pick some fresh herbs for dinner?
The undiagnosed spot on Pappy's lungs.
These are just a few of the images from the latest crop of MOVE stories.
This July, twelve participants representing ten CPPW grantees joined together for a series of intensive training days to learn how to craft a story, record their voices, select and manipulate images, and weave it all together using video editing software.
You can view their stories online.
Beyond these inital stories... we have a new crew eager to apply their new skills back in their organizations, where they will be training others to use digital stories to promote new gardens, safe routes to schools, smoke free campuses, and healthier communities for all.