Voces Bolivianas (Bolivian Voices) joined Rising Voices in July 2007 and started its activities in the city of El Alto under the leadership of Mario Durán, Hugo Miranda, and Eduardo Ávila. The project's goal is to teach the use of citizen media tools to underrepresented communities across Bolivia.
Expansion to New Regions
These first workshops led to similar workshops in the cities of Santa Cruz, Trinidad, and in an indigenous community of Puka Puka in the Department of Chuquisaca.
With the help of Bolivian bloggers across the country, Voces Bolivianas organized Bolivian Voices Day in April 2008. In eight sites in six different cities, volunteers helped lead blogging workshops to over 90 participants. In 2009, workshops were also provided to Bolivian immigrant communities in Buenos Aires, Argentina and in Northern Virginia in the United States. Additional support was provided to the Manuela Gandarillas Rehabilitation Center for the Blind in Cochabamba, which included technical support for their computer lab and assistance for its Director to begin blogging.
Web 2.0 Public Events
In January 2009, Voces Bolivianas hosted a Summit in the city of Cochabamba, which included a public event called “Web 2.0 for All.” This two-day event included a workshop for Voces Bolivianas community members from across the country.
In addition to workshops across the country, Voces Bolivianas helped organize BarCamps in the city of El Alto and Cochabamba, and helped support similar events in Santa Cruz. The organization also provided travel scholarships to bloggers to attend the national bloggers conference “Bloguivianos” held in Santa Cruz in 2007 and in La Paz in 2008.
Work with Indigenous Communities
There has also been direct collaboration with the organization Jaqi Aru, a project that uses digital media tools to promote and preserve the Aymara language and culture. Through workshops and technical support, the Jaqi Aru project now has its own blog, Facebook page, and Twitter account.
In the Media and Global Recognition
Voces Bolivianas was also awarded an honorable mention in the category of Digital Communities from Prix ArsElectronica in 2009.