S4S is a media series that empowers youth of our country to capture compelling stories of people who are implementing tangible, local, and equitable climate solutions. The goal for S4S isn't just the spread of information–it's also the spread of inspiration. As part of this series, our Team India will focus on: a) Empowering youth with the use of media b) Capture real stories of resilience and change from the ground c) Motivating other communities of the world to adopt these solutions. S4S links these stories to educational & campaign resources, making more climate solutions accessible.
What locality or neighborhood will your project focus on?
Describe the specific population with whom you will be working.
Climate change is creating havoc all over India. In one part of the country, we have extreme droughts, while on the other; communities are flooded with brackish water. As our country’s natural systems become increasingly unstable, our people are looking for ways to cope. They are looking for climate solutions.
Media can play a big role in helping communities reach out to wider audiences including governments to gauge support for themselves and demand policy actions.
We want to empower the youth of the local communities with the power of visual media to get the concerns of their communities heard. 50% of Indians below 25 years of age and is internet friendly. This is a great demographic dividend available to us.
Who else will be on your team to help implement the project?
Project Survival Media, www.projectsurvalmedia.org,
• Team Leader- India: Ritu Bhardwaj, www.facebook.com/ritubh
• Photographer & Videographer: Sachin Sanjeev Sharma,
• Engagement Co-coordinator and Writer (Recruiting)
Central Team Leader: Shadia Faynewood
What kinds of news, stories and other content will be created?
S4S is divided into 3 cycles of 4 months each. During each cycle we produce:
1. 1 documentary short film
2. 1 photo-essay
3. 2 Blogs
4. Media is showcased in online and broadcast outlets in the country,
5. Build partnerships with NGO’s, grassroots community groups, and other networks to share climate solutions,
As a result of the program:
– Youth journalists will become more empowered. By participating in a rigorous program with consistent deadlines and technical support, they will emerge from S4S with the skills, experience, and legitimacy they need to embark upon a new career path.
– Communities will become more resilient.
– Grassroots organizers will be able to identify which solutions can and should be replicated on a local, national, or international level.
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.
S4S was started in India in 2011. Within limited resources available to us, we have been able to:
1) Made 3 documentaries from India:
2) Creating short videos in association with Thomson Reuters Foundation
3) Our films screened at various international film festivals
4) 2 Photo essays:
5) 4 Blogs
6) Trained young climate champions at Global Power Shift in Istanbul, Turkey
How many participants do you think will be trained in your project?
Our experience of around 3 years has taught us that small and nimble teams work better than large ones. We want to limit our core team to 3 or 4 people (depending upon funds available to us) while we wish to hire and train other youth media makers on project basis.
For the year 2014, the team leader in India will provide access and training to 2 youth journalists (who will work fulltime with us) to publish their work, and in gaining more skills and legitimacy in major media outlets. These youth media makers after adequate training will help the team leader to train at least 10 other youths from other parts of the country.
Describe which technologies, tools, and media you will focus on when training participants.
Our focus will be on training youth in:
a) Art of story telling
c) Basic camera operations: photography and videography
b) Basic video editing
c) Basic sound recording
d) Uploading content on online platforms
e) Distribution of content on social media platforms (engagement)
f) Educate them about free resources available online
Describe the facilities where you will hold the workshops.
We run from a small office in New Delhi, India. The office is equipped with 4 computes and a high speed wi-fi internet. We also have our own cameras, sound recording equipment and editing suites.
Film-making equipment Includes:
Mac 27 inch with FCP
Macbook Pro 15 inch
Tascam Sound recorder (portable)
Human resources available:
Writer and Engagement Co-ordinator
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?
There are a lot of young people in India who are involved in climate movement. We stand in solidarity with everybody who is trying to heal our world. Many of these young climate champions do not have adequate training or facilities available to them to raise their concerns or spread the knowledge their communities have. Project Survival Media is one of the very few organizations in the world to dedicate their talent to produce media around climate change.
We are an organization of young people and like to work with youth because they hold the reigns of the future. We are relatable, known for the work we do and youth express a sense of pride in associating with us.
What specific challenges do you expect to face when planning and implementing your project?
In 2011, we had a team of 7 part-time members. All of us were placed in different parts of the country. Co-ordination was sometimes very challenging and it was costly to have regular meetings. The biggest challenge of implementing our program is to find right people within our vicinity and keep them motivated at all stages of implementation.
In 2014, we have decided to have 3 full time members who live in the same city. These 3 members will be trained and directly involved in production of content from their communities. This helps us being close to each other and always updated.
How will you measure and evaluate the project’s impact, specifically: your primary participants, the wider regional community, or the global digital community?
Measuring success means measuring:
1) the quality of media produced by our team
2) the ability of the media to engage wider audiences. This can be checked by way of distribution our media gets, hits our videos get on youtube, people who like us on Facebook, and platforms where our media is featured
3) how effectively NGOs and other partners are able to leverage our media to build capacity. This can be done by post production checkins with them.
4) the number of media partnerships or projects we are able to bag for ourselves
If your project were to be selected as a Rising Voices grantee, what would be the general timeline of project activities in 2014?
Year divided into cycle of 4 months each starting 1st May 2014.
Launch New Team
Select Theme for documentary, photo essay and blog
Check with Central Team
Research on idea
Identify potential partners
Create a list of outlets to create media
Filming trip/ In-field blog
Draft Structure of film
Editing of film
Shoot Photo essay
Share rough cut with Leader &Central team
Get feedback from leader
Make Final Cut
Share final cut for approval
Make changes (if any)
Upload the film on PSM website
Share final blog for approval/ edits
Send mail blasts
Share the media pieces
Promote them online
The same workflow will be followed in next cycle.
Detail a specific budget of up to $2,500 USD for operating costs.
While our budget for each cycle is fixed at $10,000 which includes the stipends and honorariums for team member, cost of producing a photo essay and a video documentary. Project Survival Media ran a crowd funding drive in the months of December and January to raise some money for Team India. Unfortunately we could not meet our goal and short $4000 to run a successful cycle. We are assured of a grant of $1500 in August 2014 and $2500 from this micro grant will go a long way in helping us relaunch our media teams and produce some excellent stories in 2014. Following is a description of how we are expecting to spend these $2500:
Cost Qty Total
Honorarium (Engagement Coordinator) 320 4 $1280
Honorarium (Videographer & Photographer) 320 4 $1280
Grand Total $2560
Besides the microgrant funding, what other support can Rising Voices provide for your project to ensure its success?
We would really appreciate mentorship support from Rising Voices for our media team. We are very interested in understanding media strategies we may adopt to reach out wider set of audiences.
Project Survival Media, Team India