Participatory Video: Learning beyond borders

27 March 2014 | Article

The wonderful thing about using a camera is that it sets young adults free from the expected idioms of books and writing and thereby helps them to explore and express. It helps them in connecting better with their surroundings and the world without.

Ecosystems for Life, is planning to use modern communication tools and technology in its endeavour to contribute to social and policy change. Participatory Video (PV) is such a tool. The activity facilitates young adults, to assimilate all they know and connect them to the resources within. Another interesting facet is that since PV is a communication tool, therefore the idea will create a sustainable genetic code for learning beyond borders.

On this backdrop, Earthcare Outreach Trust (ECO) in collaboration with Ecosystems for Life organized a two-day training of trainers (ToT) workshop in Delhi on 26-27March.

This ToT was aimed for members of the Joint research team in Bangladesh including Pintu Saha, Sumon Islam and Nur Tazmeen Neer, to familiarize them with the process of PV. In this workshop, ECO’s partner organization from Bangladesh, Creative Lab Limited, participated through three of their key members. The workshop was conducted by Krishnendu Bose, Managing Trustee, ECO and Nandan Singh Latwal, trainer, ECO. Among others, Madhurima Bose, Dharma Singh, Swati Khanna and Mayukh Pal from ECO and Archana Chatterjee, Sushmita Mandal and Zobaidur Rahman from IUCN were present.

On the first day, the participants were exposed to ECO’s PV process, learning the methodology of participatory video and how to start a dialogue with children, creating a space for discussion and creativity. The participants were provided with literature of ECO’s process and were given hands-on experience through various exercises.  On the second day, a group of four boys from Delhi Convent School were invited to participate in the workshop. The three participants from Bangladesh and Mayukh Pal from India were encouraged to transform their first day’s learning into a self-facilitated workshop with the four young adults and inspire them to make their own short film. The facilitators demonstrated their newly acquired skills well and at the end of the second day presented a short film made by participating children about traffic hazards in Delhi.
 
Now the stage is set for the final workshop with Char young adults in Malda, India and Bangladesh, in May 2014!

The workshop was a part of the Participatory Video (PV) project with young adults in the Chars of West Bengal, India and Bangladesh under Ecosystems for Life. The objective of project is to twin schools in India and Bangladesh to create groups of cross-border children and facilitate co-creation of films on local sustainability issues.

ECO runs 8-10 day PV workshops for children and young adults. The participants are trained in the basics of filmmaking and self reflection. By the end of the workshop, they make a short film on a given theme, authored by their own perspectives and vision.


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