Programmes

Our basic programmes are organised into major thrust areas, and are structurally organised into Programme Units. The thrust areas are namely:

Unit for community media

Goal : To produce and co-create community media and forms of expressions ranging from community videos, digital stories, community radio, which represent grassroots perspectives on development and social reality.

We strive to produce people-centred media in an effort to bring people’s issues to the fore. We also produce diverse electronic and digital media forms. This unit fosters two sub-units: namely, community video and community radio.

Recently, our initiative to support the creation of community videos on grassroots issues has resulted in marginalised communities showing an interest, and taking efforts to learn different aspects of video film-making. These videos portray stories of struggle, cover issues affecting people’s lives, share innovative approaches, and circulate grassroots realities bringing views and aspirations of the marginalised. Our efforts are towards foregrounding development issues that have not been visually represented in the mainstream. We endeavour to project the ‘voices of the voiceless’, important and crucial, but often ignored and side-lined. Production of community video acts as a catalyst for other constructive community-level actions which are important steps for re-building the community.

Community radio is still in its infant stage as we are awaiting the clearance from the government. However, we are committed to record and disseminate stories from the margins in the city of Nashik.

Unit for content creation

Goal : To research and create content for publications, website and other media forms on grassroots perspective and design its layout for circulation.

Our various publications promote content that represents voices from the margins as well as deepen grassroots perspectives. From time to time, the publications also raise dialogues on critical issues affecting our media and cultural landscape. Some of our publications are:

  • Abhivyakti’,  a Marathi journal on media and communication
  • Maitri’, a monthly Marathi newsletter for and by youth
  • Expressions’, an English journal on media, communication, and development
  • Other booklets and manuals related to our work in media, sexuality, learning, parenting, and sustainable living

Unit for co-learning & strengthening capacities

Goal : To develop knowledge, skills and attitudes among various grassroots and other stakeholders on different aspects of communication, media, design and self-directed learning to facilitate leadership in deepening sustainable development.

We have been providing training support with a view to develop knowledge, skills and attitude amongst different constituency groups in communication, media and design for developing leadership at various levels. Our emphasis is on enhancing two types of capacities, one is related to communication and its relevance to the self, organisation and the community, and the second is related to design and media for fostering leadership and empowerment. We also hope to start a long-term programme for youth. Our pioneering training programmes are in developing communication and media skills as well as organisational development.

Fostering creative expressions and critical thinking in children

Goal : To develop critical thinking of children regarding various social issues affecting their lives and promote their expressions and empowerment.

We are collaborating with Meljol, Mumbai to develop the capacities of teachers and students of primary schools in understanding their social realities and inculcating the value of saving and developing local enterprises. We have chosen Malegaon district near Nashik for its low socio-economic indicators and workin125 schools in close collaboration with the teachers and authorities. A systematic documentation of the children’s responses is being maintained.

Unit for advocacy and networking

Goal : To collect, disseminate and advocate various community media forms facilitating grassroots development through innovative use of social media and strengthen media activists and youth network in Maharashtra for building their capacities, perspectives and actions for advocating grassroots leadership and democracy.

Our work here is two-fold: Firstly, creating awareness about digital media forms co-produced with marginalized communities, and secondly, advocacy efforts to reach out to various members of the civil society. We believe more efforts need to be taken to find media partners at the local, regional and international levels to showcase grassroots stories of struggle and social justice, which will leverage the lopsidedness of coverage.

Our media resource centre, well equipped with books, journals, photographs, slides, puppets, video documentaries, flannel stories, etc., helps further this cause. Further, we also need to work together with state-level networks of community-based organisations across Maharashtra to facilitate the emergence of new grassroots realities.

The unit also houses a sub-unit of youth leadership and partners with the ‘Anubhav Shiksha’ network in Maharashtra towards youth empowerment.

Developing youth leadership

Goal : To strengthen youth expressions in Maharashtra by building the capacities of civil society members with special reference to youth and social activists to produce, use, and promote media depicting the concerns of marginalised groups.

We have initiated the ‘Anubhav Shikha’(Experiential Learning) project in North Maharashtra through a strategic partnership with YUVA, Mumbai to sensitise young people in rural and urban mofussil areas about their identities, expressions, and leadership potentials. We are part of a state-level ‘Anubhav Shiksha’ network which works with youth in different regions of Maharashtra.