Tweets4D is anchored on the high mobile phones penetration in Africa. At just over 600 million phones, it’s undoubtedly the most preferred ICT tool for information access. Tweeter has an SMS system which allows individual subscribers using feature phones to send short text messages at the local cost of service providers. We propose the Siaya County Community Hall Of Fame where we will use Tweeds4D to identify untold community stories and tales and highlight heroes. This will inspire and elevate role models as well as keep our culture alive. This info/content will be on a website.
What locality or neighborhood will your project focus on?
Describe the specific population with whom you will be working.
We will work with the Siaya County office and local Government as well as opinion leaders and community members. We have consulted widely regarding this proposal with various stakeholders. Even though the project will be an easy sell in the community, it is imperative that these stakeholders get involved for the overall success of the project. The population of Siaya County according to 2009 census is 842,304 people from the 5 constituencies (Ugenya, Alego, Gem, Bondo and Rarieda). The levels of computer literacy is at 68% and mobile phone ownership at 96%. Internet access is mainly via mobile phones.
Who else will be on your team to help implement the project?
Amos Ochieng: He has a passion for photography and quite savvy with social media mainly Twitter and Facebook.
Enock Chiteri: He is an Open Street Map specialist, here is his work for a map which is going to cover the entire Siaya County. We intend to map out the GPS coordinates for all our Hall of Fame locations for easy access by visitors and community members.
Damas Ogwe: He is a journalist by profession and this makes him very useful for the interviews we will conduct with the candidates.
What kinds of news, stories and other content will be created?
We envision creating content that will inspire the community, uplift role models to inspire and recreate themselves in others. Many great personalities, stories/tales, history, tourist attraction sites among others remain undocumented. Citizen media output will mainly be digital stories, videos and pictures accessible via a blog and also available at the community library and telecentres within. The community will participate by identifying these places via twitter messages to us. The twitter service has potential for use in many other ways as regards content dissemination, our hope is to expand its use in the community to share not only our content summary but in such areas as heath, education and agriculture, community mobilization among other areas.
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.
We have established connections with local leadership and several youth groups. We have also laid strategic plans to enable telecentres and cyber cafe operators as well as the local library to be able to offer the service to the community.
How many participants do you think will be trained in your project?
Tweets4D will mainly train trainers of trainers from the entire Siaya county. The county has 20 divisions where we will draw 180 mentors to train and release to train the rest of the community on how to submit content. The community has a structure of monthly meetings called “Baraza's” which we will use to train the community. In a 6 months we hope to have trained over 3000 people and have documented and inducted 100 people to the platform, have at least 20 videos and 300 pictures in our gallery. We intend to sustain their participation by giving feedback from Tweets4D platform to the community and sensitizing them on the need to preserve such content, as such they will see the need to continue sharing.
Describe which technologies, tools, and media you will focus on when training participants.
Mobile technology is at the helm of our plans and the community has good access to phones. Tweeter has a short code (8988-safaricom, 40404 –Airtel) which we will train youths on how to use for sharing information to us as well as widely with the subscribed community members. The team we will work with have various skill sets, namely; mapping, social media, web design, community mobilization and journalism. This technology is important to Siaya County because it is vastly owned and used on a daily basis.
Describe the facilities where you will hold the workshops.
The workshops will be held at a school compound or church facility to minimize on the cost of training. We will identify a school with electricity and access to computers. We have in mind Nyasanda community high school which has 20 computers and internet access hence can enable us conduct the workshop. Internet is mainly through a mobile service provider Safaricom router over a 3G network.
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 have worked in the community for over 10 years through Ugunja Community Resource Centre (www.ugunja.org) and have developed trust and adoration in the community. Our long term plan is to use the Tweet4D idea to share information on health tips, agriculture and explore areas like sending out opportunities to youths on employment, govermnent funds access and tips for women on
What specific challenges do you expect to face when planning and implementing your project?
Training the entire community eventually will be a major challenge however our approach of training trainers should take care of this. We also expect some form of attitude from community members who have not embraced technology and hope to do proper sensitization before we launch the service.
How will you measure and evaluate the project’s impact, specifically: your primary participants, the wider regional community, or the global digital community?
Our goal is to document inspirational moments, people and timelines of the society through use of tweeter. The community is at the centre stage of this project to identify and recommend cases that they feel need to be captured through tweets4D. We will measure and evaluate the impact by how many community members send us data, how many people access the service, and how many kids in school grow up understanding their community, knowing their leaders and culture. We expect that by the end of the project we have more youth inspired positively in life and proud of their community. We also hope to have the rest of the country learn about Siaya county. This effort should spar considerable online community of underrepresented people online.
If your project were to be selected as a Rising Voices grantee, what would be the general timeline of project activities in 2014?
Start date: June 2014
Tasks and Activities:
– Mobilization of stakeholders – Mid May to end of May.
– Baseline Survey – 1st week of June (Gather community phone contacts and find their views on tweets4D project)
– Tweet4D server setup.
– Training of Trainers.
– Roll out and community training.
Detail a specific budget of up to $2,500 USD for operating costs.
Stakeholder’s workshop – USD 350
Baseline Survey – USD 800
Training – USD 400
Interviews and gathering stories – USD 250
Mapping – USD 200
Coordination and evaluation – USD 250
Besides the microgrant funding, what other support can Rising Voices provide for your project to ensure its success?
Video and Still Camera
Travel grants to attend relevant conferences
Kenya Telecentre Network