By Seelan Palay
On 26 January 2014, EngageMedia conducted a Video Advocacy training session for Myanmar activists as part of Human Rights Working Group’s (HRWG) Training of Trainers on ASEAN and Human Rights in Jakarta, Indonesia.
The group of 11 activists, who came from organisations working for child, women and human rights, were introduced to the aims and methodologies of Video Advocacy and basic skills in video documentation.
We started the day with a presentation coupled with screenings of various advocacy videos from around the Asia-Pacific region, which provided as tools for discussion on not only effective messaging and packing, but also the commonality of issues across borders.
This was followed with a practical session on the five basic shots used in video production. The participants got in groups and shot many creative photographs, from which we demonstrated how a simple story could be told using simply those five images. We then showed more videos in which the participants successfully identified the shots utilized, while identifying their messages, advocacy goals, and target audiences.
The final session was on basic theory and practice for video documentation in various situations such as demonstrations or press conferences. We then focused on the best ways to record video interviews, with participants getting into groups and conducting short interviews of each other. The videos were then screened with discussions on the techniques used.
We were glad to note that all the everyone participated actively and showed a clear grasp of the concepts of Video Advocacy and the new skills they had gained. We look forward to working with more CSOs from the region this year, with two more similar training sessions with HRWG slated for February and March already.