PV Workshop1Contributed by Chisomo Kamchacha

As the CSA project continues to unfold in the communities, the community coordinators of the project have started working with farmers and training them in alternative ways of sharing their story. We believe stories are very important in many cultures and have the power to transform lives. Unlike in the past, when parents or grandparents used to sit and tell stories to their children or grandchildren, today the story-telling tradition is being diluted and slipping away. Kusamala, through the CSA project, believes in ‘Sharing the Power of Your Story.’ Using participatory video, the communities in Dowa will be able to share the stories of their land as well as the critical issues currently affecting their land.

Beginning on June 16th and running through the 20th, the community coordinators held their first participatory video (PV) workshop. The coordinators are working in sets of 3, and will be facilitating their workshops in a series. The first group of coordinators who facilitated the workshop this week were: Temwanani Gondwe, Memory Phwitiko and Enock Alfred. The workshop was held at M’ndolela Agriculture Extension Planning Area, located in Dowa district. The workshop was patronised by 15 community members, of which over 60% were women.

PV Workshop

Coordinators leading a dance to begin the PV workshop in Dowa.

Enlivened by music and dance, the participants were excited to create a video of their own and to tell the world about their community through video. They are excited to be speaking for themselves, to a large audience, and they believe that their story will be better understood when told through pictures and video. We hope to share the video that will come out of this workshop, as well as the videos of the other community coordinators’ workshops to be held in the future.