The project aims to give voice to voiceless, in this case to youngsters of ethnic minority groups in Georgia. The one month project implies teaching online media tools to 9 high school students of different ethnicity and as a result creating one shared blog. The workshops will be at weekends. Each session will be about different multimedia tools so that in the end the blog includes video, audio and photo materials as well as texts. The length of the project lets us establish close ties between these students so that they will continue cooperation even after this particular project.
What locality or neighborhood will your project focus on?
Describe the specific population with whom you will be working.
Project focuses on 10th and 11th graders: 3 Georgians, 3 Azerbaijanis and 3 Armenians from Kvemo Kartli region. Based on our observation as well as data provided by local organization although this age group has access to computers due to low awareness of useful tools of social media they use it mainly for entertainment. Before submitting this proposal our organization members had several meetings in the area and together with local community they identified necessity of training which will give youth a tool to deliver their views and problems on their own to large audience. This particular group of people is poorly presented in mainstream and online media. There are news items from time to time about minorities but they do not cover problems of teenagers of this particular group.
Who else will be on your team to help implement the project?
Tamar Svanidze – project coordinator, Director of CSO Multimedia Training Center; journalist at www.agenda.ge and Internews Georgia. She was a social media trainer in Ph International. http://on.fb.me/1exYwb1 http://linkd.in/1grXRGl
Alexander Asatiani – trainer, author of social media textbooks, lecturer of multimedia journalism at Georgian Institute of Public Affairs. http://sandroasatiani.com/ http://on.fb.me/1grY4cM http://linkd.in/1jCEYko
Ketevan Gigashvili – trainer, investigator journalist; worked for various online and mainstream media outlets. Her documentary won prize at one of film festivals in Tbilisi; She was a social media trainer in Ph International. http://on.fb.me/1m0i3TD
Manana Kuchukhidze – Financial Manager of CSO Multimedia Training Center. http://on.fb.me/1s
What kinds of news, stories and other content will be created?
The final product of the project will be a blog with different types of posts both content-wise and form-wise in Georgian as it is the state language. Each post will have two authors from different ethnic groups. This way the content of each post will have at least two different viewpoints. The posts will not be journalistic work. They will describe problems or issues existing in the area but it will also show views and attitudes of the posts’ authors. The stories will be enriched with photos and video material as well as audio podcasts so that at the end of the project the blog will contain stories about different topics which are important and relevant to local teenagers and these topics will be covered with different media tools.
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.
While working for Ph International, trainers of Multimedia Training Center conducted number of training in Kvemo Kartli region on the topic of social media. Thus we have partner organizations in Kvemo Kartli which will help us in the implementation process. SIQA is among them one of the leading NGOs functioning in the region. Their assistance will be more related to technical aspects of the project such as communicating with potential participants, finding proper venue for training, etc. Apart from the local organizations, local municipality of Marneuli is willing to get involved in the project but negotiations are still in process at present, so it is hard to say what kind of support they might give.
How many participants do you think will be trained in your project?
Project will have 9 participants – 3 Georgians, 3 Azerbaijanis and 3 Armenians all living in Kvemo Kartli region. Idea of this project came from local community so finding project participants does not look like a challenge. However, we will have some selection criteria in order to find those who not only have desire but also some technical knowledge of computer and mobile devices. Project lasts one month and during this period each participant works with peers thus they all get to know each other very well. This will create ground for further cooperation. Trainers will keep in touch with them so that shared blog continues working. After six months 1 most active participant and 1 author of most liked/shared/commented post will be awarded.
Describe which technologies, tools, and media you will focus on when training participants.
Participants will work on shared blog built on Wordpress platform. Apart from this, they will get acquainted with social networks – Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Soundcloud. They will also have some practice on Wevideo tools. These platforms will let them edit and share small-size audio-video material reaching large audience outside their small town. The students will basically work with mobile devices. As long as they are not equipped with high level technology we want to teach them how to make interesting blog posts with limited technical equipment.
Describe the facilities where you will hold the workshops.
The venue where the training sessions will take place is equipped with at least 6 computers so that participants will have opportunity to practice each topic covered during the theoretical part of the sessions. The computers have access to internet; however, we will have USB modem so that in case connection is lost we will still be able to deliver at least theoretical information about the topics.
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?
The trainers who are involved in this project have experience of working with population of this particular region. They delivered some training to ethnic minority groups and due to past experience and connection with local community local people have trust towards these individuals. This project is continuation of the previous collaboration between MTC members and local organizations and community and it will continue even after this project as well. In the long run MTC plans to work to promote and raise multimedia literacy among ethnic minority groups in other regions.
What specific challenges do you expect to face when planning and implementing your project?
Biggest challenge for this project will be the language. The training is planned to be in Georgia as well as the blog’s content. However, people in Marneuli, Kvemo Kartli, speak Russian better than Georgian. There is high probability that potential participants might not know Georgian well enough to understand material delivered by trainers. In order to avoid this kind of problem, we included cost of interpreter in budget. Another challenge might be low speed or disconnecting from internet unexpectedly. To prevent ourselves from such problem we will keep USB modem with us and use it accordingly.
How will you measure and evaluate the project’s impact, specifically: your primary participants, the wider regional community, or the global digital community?
Success of the project will be measured by activeness of participants after the training ends which can be measured by number of posts they put on the blog. Besides, number of visitors and comments on the blog will also indicate how productively and effectively participants and their trainers worked.
If your project were to be selected as a Rising Voices grantee, what would be the general timeline of project activities in 2014?
Total length of the project – 1 month (June 7 – June 29 and final event in December to give awards).
Preparation – 15-30 May: receiving and selecting applications.
June 7: Session on social media, blogs, social network and registering shared blog together.
June 8: Session “how to write a blog post, comments and how to promote our blog in other social networks”.
June 14: Discussion about previous week’s material and homework; theoretical and practical work on taking photos.
June 15: Session on how to produce a photo story. Choosing topic for new home task.
June 21: Discussion on previous homework. Theoretical and practical session how to shoot videos with mobile devices.
June 22: Theoretical and practical session on editing the videos. Choosing topic for video story.
June 28: Summarizing the project and setting further goals.
June 29: Excursion to Akhaltsikhe to assist and give more fertile ground for participants’ further cooperation.
Detail a specific budget of up to $2,500 USD for operating costs.
Reimbursement for trainers – 437.50 (including taxes).
Interpreter (if need be) – 348.00
Accountant – 100.00
Travel expenses – 436.00 (Marneuli – 240.80; Akhaltsikhe – 195.20)
Venue – 250.00
Food for excursion – 88.00
Lunch during training – 198.00
Stationery – 100.00
Flip camera – 110.00
Tablet – 160.00
Unforeseen expenses – 67.00
Bank fees – 23.00
Besides the microgrant funding, what other support can Rising Voices provide for your project to ensure its success?
Support in promoting the blog and topics raised by project participants will be highly appreciated.
Multimedia Training Center