Kosovo: Same City, Different Stories
Sharing Realities/Story telling through photography – among various ethnic groups (Albanians, Serbs, RAE, Bosnians and Turks) living in Mitrovica (North and South) in Kosovo, which still remains the only divided and tensed city in Balkans. These stories will highlight what it takes to live in the same city but having and experiencing different lives imposed from the post conflict circumstances. We plan to implement a series of training sessions in order to train the participants on photography and blogging about sharing realities context and lastly publishing all the stories in an E-book.
What locality or neighborhood will your project focus on?
Describe the specific population with whom you will be working.
We want to involve – Albanians, Serbians, RAE, Bosnian, and Turks.
Meetings – individual meetings with representatives of these youth groups belonging to these ethnic groups have been conducted.
Currently in the city of Mitrovica mass media concentrates only in the main political issues – hence, there is an enormous lack of youth friendly platforms which could be used by youth groups to express/tell their stories/realities.
Relying in the fact that there is a big lack of opportunities for young people living in Mitrovica, we have decided to engage and support them to increase their opportunities in order to be able to share (online – via E-Book and other online sources) their realities.
Internet and computer familiarity level – basic users or moderate
Who else will be on your team to help implement the project?
Nita Zeqiri – Photographer – www.nitazeqiri.com
DardaMedia – Cultural NGO and Online Platform – www.dardamedia.com and www.dardamedia.org
Rondine Cittadella Della Pace – Peace Association from Italy www.rondine.org
What kinds of news, stories and other content will be created?
Sharing realities/Story telling – will be focusing on under-represented sharing realities on difficulties of everyday life as a consequence of the previous conflict which has widely divided these communities.
Peace related news, peace building, coexistence, tolerance – similar content will be shared via different online sources to further spread the project impact on the wider community both in Mitrovica and Kosovo in general.
To conclude, the media output that will be created by participants will be the E-book as the final product of the project where photos with stories will be published.
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.
Dardamedia (existing) – our collaboration with Dardamedia will entail to provide opportunities for internships to write blogs as well as to promote our project activities including the E-book in their platform.
Rondine Cittadella Della Pace – Italy ((existing)) – our collaboration with Rondine will focus in promoting our project activities including the E-book in their webpage.
Municipality (Both North and South) (Future) – collaboration to promote our activities
Youth Centers/Corners (Existing and Future) – collaboration to use their facilities to conduct activities
How many participants do you think will be trained in your project?
30 youth participants (age 16-29) from different communities living in Mitrovica region will be involved in project activities – particularly training sessions for photography and blogging. They will continue to be part of project activities even after training session in various activities such as blogging, photo reporting, and become page administrators to maintain the Facebook page.
Describe which technologies, tools, and media you will focus on when training participants.
Members of our project team are photographers and have experiences on conducting similar workshops. (Please refer to this webpage: www.nitazeqiri.com)
Digital Photography will be the main tool that we plan to utilize in order to transmit the message driven from the realities/stories. Participants will be trained on various techniques and skills on how to take photos as well as on how to tell a story through utilizing these techniques.
Simplicity and the recent trends of our youth groups to take pictures and spread those pictures via social media is the main reason why do we believe that this approach – technology is appropriate in order to transmit the right message.
Describe the facilities where you will hold the workshops.
The youth center space that we will be using as our main spot where the workshops will be implemented is equipped with computers and it has internet connection (15 Mbps)
The digital camera that we will be using is Nikon D90 (professional) and smart phones. Other than that the office – the space is youth friendly and furnished with tables and chairs. Apart from the youth center space that will be used, youth will have the chance to go out in their communities and take pictures there.
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?
Our project team has been directly working for more than 3 years now with different communities around Kosovo. Particularly in Mitrovica we have been involving them in more than 10 community projects (involving all the ethnicities living in Mitrovica city). Relying in our experience on mentoring and designing community projects and increasing the awareness of various communities on their social issues , we believe it makes us the right organization to implement a similar project in the city of Mitrovica.
What specific challenges do you expect to face when planning and implementing your project?
The hesitation of the Serbian youth – community is the main challenge we expect. This has proven to be the case in our previous projects but, we have cautiously resolved these obstacles through clearly defining and transmitting our good intentions and the general gain resulting from our projects. Political instability is a constant challenge which might impact the readiness of our participants to partake in this project
How will you measure and evaluate the project’s impact, specifically: your primary participants, the wider regional community, or the global digital community?
The results of the project regarding primary beneficiaries will be assessed with pre and post test on skills of the youth for using different technologies to tell stories. The success will be assessed with the number of youth who are trained on how to take pictures and write blogs on issues of their concern, especially number of youth who continue to engage in such activities beyond the project through internship opportunities. The impact of this project in the wider community will be assessed based on the follow up initiatives in this particular community that cover issues of concern for this region. Whereas, the impact in the digital community will be measures by the number of people who get involved and become part of our project activities and further promote our project values.
If your project were to be selected as a Rising Voices grantee, what would be the general timeline of project activities in 2014?
June – July 2014 – Announcement of the open call and the selection of participants
June 2014 – Creating a Facebook page in order to promote project activities
July – August 2014 – Preparation and implementation of the Training sessions on photography and blogging about sharing realities context
September 2014 – photo shooting and blogging
December 2014 – collect the best stories and publish them via E-book and make them available online.
December 2014 – Digital exhibition where we plan to show/present photos and blogs in monitors instead of frames.
Detail a specific budget of up to $2,500 USD for operating costs.
Travel Costs = 400
Digital Camera Costs = 600
Training Session Costs = 400
E-book costs = 400
Office Expenses = 300
Exhibition Costs = 250
Total amount you are requesting (in US dollars)* = 2350
Besides the microgrant funding, what other support can Rising Voices provide for your project to ensure its success?
To support us promoting our activities through publishing our E-book in different networks that Rising Voices can assist. In addition, to assist us on creating linkages with other agencies, online magazines, publishing houses and other open sources. Finally, supporting us to allow access on any online training from which our youth group could directly benefit from.