Media Literacy Program
TRAINING FOR MEDIA ACTIVISM AND SOCIAL EQUALITY
ACP‐EU Support Programme to ACP Cultural Sectors implemented by the Secretariat of the ACP Group of States and funded by the European Union. DOCUSOUND is a project developed by COL’OR NGO in partnership with Kenya Union of the Blind and the Secretariat of the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities.
Our goal is to strengthen democracy and include minorities and underserved groups in the public debate through open access to media and information production/distribution.
DOCUSOUND Media Literacy Program provides access to information and communication technology (ICT) and media content production —in order to strengthen democracy and expand social participation for minorities and other marginalized members of society in Africa and developing countries worldwide. Once a community’s basic needs (food, shelter, health care and basic education) have been met, it is vital that all members then have equal access to information production and consumption toward improving economic and social opportunities. This enables members to help themselves out of marginalization while empowering civil society as a whole.
As social networks continue to develop, expand and grow more complex, their influence on social change (whether directly or indirectly) also continues to evolve. For this reason, providing all social actors (including minorities) with open access to social networks—and the tools they need to use them efficiently—is of utmost importance. While the information gatekeepers may have largely fallen apart, giving audiences open access to consumption and production of information tends to diffuse the potential for self-empowerment. We believe that training of and collaboration between social actors is the best way to foster sustainability in the long run.
If minorities of all kinds (based on gender, race, physical/mental abilities, economic resources, etc.) are proactively involved in social dynamics, the barriers that traditionally prevent their advancement can be overcome once and for all, as society begins to consider them not as burdens but as resources. DOCUSOUND is intended not only for minorities, however; rather, it is an inclusive long-term project that would include both minorities and the larger populations to work together in building a network of factual-content/documentary professionals, whose work aims to raise awareness on various topics with the ultimate goal of gaining social change.
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DOCUSOUND is a three-tier project:
1. Professional training program for the production and distribution of factual/reality-based media and audio/radio content. As the new media are a fast-growing field of work, the DOCUSOUND training program will focus on both production and financing/fundraising subjects, in order to ensure the participants learn how to sustain themselves professionally.
2. Distribution platform of factual/reality-based content, available for a fee online and via traditional media.
3. Network of skilled media professionals in the national and international markets, working to exchange good practices, policies and methodologies. The network is virtually open to participants worldwide.
Audio (radio) is easy to handle, inexpensive and lightweight—and thus easily stored and distributed and it is the best way to reach our target audiences in Africa and developing countries worldwide:
-Currently, audio is the most prolific medium. In addition, a portable aural medium is uniquely suited to Africa, where nonliteracy as well as communal living patterns tend to predominate.
-Audio (versus video) is considerably easier to handle technically, with fewer variables to be considered.
-Given that working in audio is highly practical and intuitive, a shorter training period is required for a good-quality product to come to fruition.
-Audio is cheaper in terms of technology, training, production and postproduction (free open-source editing software is largely available).
-A recorder is less invasive then a camera. That means a director can tackle difficult topics more readily, while people are more likely to speak out when they’re being recorded rather than filmed.
-Audio is more easily stored and exchanged, as MP3 files are light and require less space than video. Audio is therefore also more suitable for slower Internet connections.
-Last but not least, there are 285 million people in the world who have some degree of visual impairment, due to age or disease— “talking to them” as opposed to “showing them” is key to getting them involved in ongoing social changes of which they are, or could be, a part.
DOCUSOUND KENYA and DOCUSOUND SENEGAL are the first African chapters that are being set up in 2013. This program has received major funding from the European Union – the ACP Culture+ of the ACP Sector. If you want to know more about funding/investing in DOCUSOUND or bringing DOCUSOUND in your country, feel free to email us firstname.lastname@example.org.
DOCUSOUND in Senegal is developed in collaboration with SADPD, Secretariat of the African Decade of Persons with Disabilities; DOCUSOUND in Kenya is developed in collaboration with KUB, Kenya Union of the Blind.