Media trainers and environmental journalists will kickstart a production center in Tambakha Chiefdom which is host to the Outamba Kilimi National Park of Sierra Leone. More than thirty thousand people reside beside this park but the park does little business due to the bad road network of 71 kilometers & lack of electricity. The project will enable the 30,000 in the various sections of the chiefdom to advocate needs in the local language Susu and enable French and English voice overs. HDV&MP3 recordings will be injected to internet via FRAMEWEB.org, facebook, bluetooth/USB intranet-village.
What locality or neighborhood will your project focus on?
Describe the specific population with whom you will be working.
This proposal is based on previous work done by environmental journalists who are based in Fintonia, which is the chiefdom headquarters and social hub of Tambakha Chiefdom. In the past the people of the headquarter section and surrounding sections have responded with good attendance to interactive media such as resource management films translated and displayed in their villages. The community is host to media practitioners who have the capability of transferring data to the internet for no fee at District HQ. Poverty and lack of telecommunications has made mobile phones main focal points for downloaded information. In Tambakha, SD Cards are as necessary a hoe or cutlass. Solar options are also enabling the more constant use of smarter phones to share more volumes and complexity of data.
Who else will be on your team to help implement the project?
The above link will provide Google options on the team leader Harold Williams. In partership with other members of the Union of Environmental Journalists and the Tambakha Rural Community Development Association, the project will be managed.
What kinds of news, stories and other content will be created?
We will engage first the youth audience. School clubs are willing to act skits about everyday life and serialize them for phone viewing. After creating much local awareness about the expected global inclusion of their area more enthusiasm will be developed and this will sustain the citizens journalism in the long term. Professional earth journalists will provide local press and archive them on the web. Mining will soon come into conflict with park preservation as the people cry out for redress to their poverty. Such will be a main issue in coming months. Citizens will also be able to appeal for more tourists and agricultural investors. Local policy can also be influenced to bring services such as roads and electricity.
What technologies and digital tools do you plan to use in the trainings?
Describe the connections that you or your organization have already established or plan to establish that will contribute to the success of the project.
The Union of Environmental Journalists has committed to providing training for earth journalists in Sierra Leone. it is established that local content is free for use on the Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation. FRAMEWEB.org is an established receptacle for natural resource management best practices and citizens voices. The Tambakha Rural Community Development Association is in an established partner with the UEJ. More expansion to ecotourism websites and wider platforms will arise from the microgrant.
How many participants do you think will be trained in your project?
Community based youth who are interested in participation surpass 500. This is based on the response to similar initiatives such as nature club formation, A screening process will be conducted and those with promising skills in camera operation, interview and other production techniques will be involved. 30 trainees and 50 participants will benefit. Traditional media such as Public announcements and rallies can easily gain participation. An office space is available provided by the Chiefdom authorities to provide a training arena. This permanent venue will create an occupational sense rather than a leisure one.
Describe which technologies, tools, and media you will focus on when training participants.
“Downloading Made Easy” would be an apt name for the primary interest of the trainees and participants. We would explain how video image is recorded in DV and downloaded either by burning to disc or hard drive/USB device. We would observe and advise in the use and care of SD Cards and other memory storage mediums and experiment in test productions for uploading and community sharing. At least every household has a phone where several people and hear and view at once. Smart phones with camera and additional memory options are becoming more frequent and applicable, though the community is on forest fringe.
Describe the facilities where you will hold the workshops.
Within immediate vicinity are wi-fi for internet. Other options are between 11-61 miles away. A laptop, DV Camera and sufficient memory storage devices will suffice in addition to 3.5KVA solar power. For file sharing with broadcasters, an USB internet modem can devote 300 hours of quality time to enhancing the project. A video projector, mixer and amplifier can give wider presentations of the smart phone videos and popularize them. A four room office space with tables is sufficient.
What is your current relationship with the community with whom you plan to work? What makes you the most appropriate individual or organization to implement this project?
We reside for much of the year as environmental journalists in the Tambakha Chiefdom. In 2008 we began public awareness raising about best natural resource management practices.
We are recognized and trusted within the community and presently are the main core of journalists who report on this remote region. The national park which lies adjacent is one of 15 protected areas in the country and this particular one has become our center of empathy and ethical obligation.
What specific challenges do you expect to face when planning and implementing your project?
The main challenge is the remoteness of the region. Inputs must arrive at the first stage or otherwise perish. We have been able to acquire 4X4 vehicles on our own and XL motorbikes. We know when the rains make the roads and rivers most challenging. We have the experience to know how to quickly mobilize the people and and mange electronic devices in the field.
How will you measure and evaluate the project’s impact, specifically: your primary participants, the wider regional community, or the global digital community?
We shall have succeeded if more visitors come to the national park based on findings through the web. This has already started to happen from a site such as TripAdvisor. However, we expect that in Fintonia, the local youths will be able to form a production house where they can advocate through film and use it on mobile to share and update local events on a rolling basis.
If your project were to be selected as a Rising Voices grantee, what would be the general timeline of project activities in 2014?
Rain Season- July-September: Publicity and Training
Selection, Exposure to Citizens’ Journalism & Basic Internet, Camera and Keyboard Familiarity, Brainstorming for News, Skit and Drama Ideas
Dry Season- October-February: Production & Upload
Filming of scripts, processing into mobile phone format
Establish links on internet based on findings of youth production crew in Tambakha
Begin broadcasting local Tambakha content on National TV
February-April: Evaluation & Guidance
Detail a specific budget of up to $2,500 USD for operating costs.
COSTS in USD:
300 : Three Second-Hand Hard Drive Cameras
100 : Three Solar Chargers for mobile phones
100 : 720 Hours Internet
100 : 300 SD Cards
50 : 10 ProDuo Camera Memory Cards
400 : 4 Training workshops
100 : Susu Translation Services
100 : French Translation Services
100 : Krio Translation services
100 : Video Editors Services
100 : Publicity
300 : Travel
Besides the microgrant funding, what other support can Rising Voices provide for your project to ensure its success?
Publicity via your website would be helpful.
Union of Environmental Journalists