Friday, 8 July 2016

Mondo activities May-June 2016


May was a very busy month for Media4Development in Mondo. First, we ordered handicraft baskets from Ghana to use as gifts and awards for different public events and for working with policy makers. It seems that people understand development cooperation through something concrete that they can hold in their hands. What could be better than baskets woven by women in North Ghana where Mondo has helped the local widowers and mothers to create their own basket-weaving and sheabutter-milling cooperatives? The baskets are also co-creation, where the creativity of the women from North Ghana and of Estonian designers are united.

Baskets being made in Kongo village, North Ghana. The women work together as Yen Pang Basket Weavers cooperative.

We also continued preparing for the Opionion Festival coming up in August.

This year’s first Mondo Arvamuspoliitika Teataja (bulletin for policy makers) focussed on humanitarian aid, the World Humanitarian Summit and also gave an overview where Estonia gave humanitarian assistance during 2015. We looked at the underlying principles for the WHS, interviewed Väino Reinart (lead of the Estonian delegation at WHS), asked Estonian organizations working in Ukraine questions about the work done and analysed issues connecting humanitarian aid to climate change and migration. The bulletin can be viewed here:  The bulletin was well received and we decided to print some extra copies in June.

Our humanitarian aid expert Kristi reading the bulletin.

As partners were interested in using clips made by ERR on development cooperation myths, we had the texts translated to English and shared them with all the partners. On the same myth topic, brainstorming was going on in May to find ways to have a social media campaign on widespread myths on development cooperation without reinforcing them.

On the 26th of May, a idea-sharing morning was held for journalists on the topic of humanitarian aid, crises and migration. Mondo’s humanitarian aid expert Gert Teder spoke about the reality of humanitarian aid through the eyes of a rescue worker. Gert has worked on 14 different international missions and has a day  job in the Estonian Rescue Board as a fire-fighter. Evelyn Kaldoja, a journalist who also took part of the first Media4Development training in Helsinki, spoke about working in a conflict zone as a journalist. She is currently the head of foreign news department in Postimees and has reported from Afghanistan, Central African Republic and Mali. A presentation on the ethics of journalists while reporting on the refugee crisis was done by Eero Janson, head of Eesti Pagulasabi – an organization supporting refugees in Estonia that has also given humanitarian aid in Ukraine, Lebanon and Turkey.

Evelyn Kaldoja making a presentation at the idea-sharing morning for journalists.

 In May we also announced the next journalists’ grant competition. This time we decided to give two grants to a duo of a writing journalist and a photographer.

In May, the last article from Silvia Pärmann’s trip in January was published also:

In June, Johanna and Adrian visited a EC meeting-seminar in Milan. We also made preparations for the study trip to Palestine that Piia Puuraid was chosen to take part of. The trip itself was very successful and Piia was happy with the whole experience.

For the preparation of the social media campaign on development cooperation myths, a short questionnaire was posted to Facebook to find out the main myths on the topic in Estonia. The questionnaire was done in SurveyMonkey and a small boost was made on Facebook to make it more widespread. The questionnaire was public for two days and 41 people replied. Among all the people who filled in the questionnaire, one winner was randomly (using Random.Org generator) chosen to receive one of the baskets from Ghana. The winner was Merili A.

Happy winner Merili with her basket from Ghana.

In the end of June we also selected the two journalists who would receive the double grant. There were 6 proposals this time (10 journalists applied in total), all of which were very interesting and strong proposals. After a tough jury meeting, the grant was decided to go to Jaanus Piirsalu and Raigo Pajula who’s proposal was about the countries around the Aral sea – how the ecological catastrophe has affected the communities there and what is being done to improve the situation.

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