Every two weeks we highlight some of the latest and greatest from newly trained Rising Voices bloggers. Usually these newsletters take us all over the world, but this week we are going to focus specifically on Dhaka, Bangladesh where a group of ambitious young women are offering us an open window into their lives and the daily life of the city where they live. Here is an opportunity to get to know Bangladesh's capital without purchasing a costly ticket. Special thanks to Romi, Elia, Janine, and Kristen for leaving comments on the posts featured in the last newsletter – your support is very much appreciated.
All nine of this week's posts were featured in a wonderful article published by Rezwan on the Rising Voices website. I highly recommend it as an overview of the Nari Jibon center and the new bloggers it has trained.
Let's start by pointing to two recent posts by Nari Jibon staff members who have led workshops to train the new bloggers. Project Director Rafiq pens an homage to his wife and two children. He says he was convinced he'd forever remain a vagabond until he met Tora, his wife, best friend, and life partner. He also gives us some tips for healthy relationships. Taslima, another Nari Jibon staff member, has probably worked harder than anyone else to train and encourage as many new bloggers from the Nari Jibon project as possible. She has become such an expert on citizen media, in fact, that she was invited to give a presentation on “using blogs to create awareness” at the Youth Human Rights and Journalism Camp in Dhaka last month. In her post she describes her experience and her presentation. Speaking of Taslima, one of her students, Zannat, explains why she appreciates her favorite teacher.
Zannat has also proven to be a skilled photographer. She published some of her work from a recent visit to Lalbagh Fort. Zannat's post explains why the fort was selected as one of UNESCO's World Heritage sites. Poly decided to use her digital camera to take pictures of her garden. We are still not sure if the color coordination was intended or coincidental. Anne, another skilled photographer, gives us a glimpse of Bangladeshis’ favorite seaside town, Cox's Bazar.
Every family is different, but most of us have one special family member who we depend on and share our hopes and fears with. In a brief post, Sufia pays tribute to that special person in her family.
Of all the successful Rising Voices projects, Nari Jibon exemplifies how “slow and study” can lead to real change. Under Rafiq and Taslima's leadership, Nari Jibon began training just a few bloggers how to post on their group blog. More recently, after a vist by Dr. Kathryn Ward and a series of workshops by visiting volunteers, Nari Jibon bloggers have opened their individual blogs where they find creative ways to share their lives with others. They are now individually and collectively a force in the world of citizen journalism.
We should also remember that the Nari Jibon Center is much more than a blogging center. Here women from all around Bangladesh come to learn valuable computer, business, and language skills. Bangladesh is famous for its boom of female textile workers in the 1990's. Most of us probably have at least a few garments that were made by Bangladeshi women. Thanks to the Nari Jibon Center, many more Bangladeshi women are also now working as accountants, professors, marketers, graphic designers, and entrepreneurs.
That's all for this week. Don't forget to visit the Rising Voices website for updates from all 16 projects, links to grants and awards related to citizen media, and new photos and videos.
Have a great weekend!