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Latest from the Rising Voices Outreach Projects

A different viewpoint:

Most Bangladeshi bloggers are male and come from either middle or upper-middle class families from urban areas. But Nari Jibon’s blog Bangladesh from our view is increasingly providing voices to mostly underprivileged and underrepresented women of Dhaka through blogging. They are providing a different viewpoint about Bangladesh than the ones previously seen in the blogosphere and international media. There is also a Bangla-language blog which enables these bloggers to tell their stories in their own language.

Read the story of Afsana Pervin’s scholastic and working successes after a life as a housewife. With successful training in English and computer skills provided by Nari Jibon, she is now employed at an established private school.

Mohtarimun Nahar (Bipa) describes and posts pictures of how she celebrated the Eid and Puja – major festivities for Muslims and Hindus respectively – with her friends.

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Taufiqa Farzana portrays a typical Bangladeshi fisherman. Shamima Akhter [bn] writes about a young fish seller named Asma and comments that there are many like her who must work at this age to support their families.

M.G. Rabbany introduces us to the world ‘Porabari Chom Chom’ a famous and legendary sweet from Porabari, Bangladesh. Some poems and short stories were also posted in the Bangla Blog “Our Stories” [bn] showing the literary abilities of the female bloggers.

These and more weekly updates of Nari Jibon’s blogging activities are available on their Rising Voices project blog.

Voices of the underrepresented break stereotypes:

Voces Bolivianas is another such revolutionary project based in El Alto, a fast growing city of immigrants in Bolivia. The 23 enthusiastic participants from groups rarely heard on the net had their first workshop on blogging last September. Using their blogs they are breaking the stereotypes of the city portrayed by media. These blogs are being aggregated at Voces Bolivianas El Alto and translated into the Aymara language.

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Photo: A few participants of Voces Bolivianas via Flickr

In the first week’s roundup [es] on October 19, 2007 Hugo Miranda featured stories from the participant’s blogs including David’s comparison [es] between the cities – Santa Cruze and El Alto. German Apaza criticized the catholic churches for commercially exploiting Jesus Christ’s image.

In the second week’s roundup [es] on October 27, 2007 Hugo highlighted posts of Ruben Hilari who supports the closure of bars and cantinas [es] to keep students away from drinking. Alberto Medrano also chimes in [es]. Graciela Romero depicts the problems [es] as a shortage of LPG gas for cooking in the city.

Meanwhile in the English translation blog of the project a featured post of boliviaindigena tells us about a young person who announces the routes of the different mini-buses as a profession.

Local stories for global audiences:

The latest update from the HiperBarrio project was that Juliana Rincón, a veteran contributor at Global Voices and also a leader of the Rising Voices project HiperBarrio was invited to the PopTech conference as a partner blogger. With the help of libraries in the hillside working class neighborhoods of Medellín, participants are using citizen media tools to tell their stories to a Global Audience.

On October 14, 2007 we saw an update on the project posted by Medea where the day’s workshop assignment was explained. Carovl was very inspired and wrote four articles [es] before going out to take photos.

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Photo: Carovl – The reality of the city Medellin

Angelo skipped lunch to write his article about a historical reference to the 1980s – The Renault Master 4.

They brainstormed about the upcoming video blogging workshop and the participants took about 200 pictures that day. Take a look at them in the project’s Flickr account.

The other projects

Earlier this month we learned from David that the remaining two Rising Voices projects are facing some challenges at the local level. We hope that soon we will be able to highlight the contents of the Think Build Change Salone and Neighborhood Diaries projects which are based in Sierra Leone and India respectively.

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