“Inclusion is vital for a harmonious, truly free and open society”, “Journalism must promote inclusion as normality”, “Inclusion must be promoted including through the lens of aspects that inspire, add value and chart new directions for development”. “We need mechanisms that would help integrate people with disabilities with more success in education”. These are just some of the ideas gathered in the multimedia lab „Innovation for Inclusion”.
As this event is a first for the IJC, we gathered several opinions from participants, experts, trainees and jury members to find out what was their motivation to participate as well as their expectations during the lab.
PROJECTS WITH POTENTIAL OF CHANGE
Natalia Cernat, Programme Coordinator at the Swiss Cooperation Office: “During the two days of the lab we witnessed the birth of 9 very interesting multimedia projects, all with great potential to change people’s perceptions of people from marginalised groups. We were glad that the event gathered participants from Comrat, Ribnita, Chisinau and other places. I think the uniqueness and value of the projects lies in the fact that the teams were diverse, including journalists, pedagogues, young people and adults. Although only four of them will be financially supported, we hope that the others will find partners and supporters among media organisations that want to diversify their content with innovative material inspired by real life and experiences.”
Galina Climov, Executive Director of the Alliance of Organisations for People with Disabilities: “This project is an innovative idea and intervention – from conception to implementation. The participants approached a broad spectrum of problems of people with different types of disabilities (problems of parental information, development of independent living skills, entertainment, sexual minority issues, discrimination, etc.). In my opinion, each project has a right to life and implementation because each will have a long-lasting impact on the public aiming to solve certain problems.”
"A BREATH OF FRESH AIR"
Ana Gherciu, media trainer: “What excites me most about the multimedia lab is the diversity of the participants. I was very happy that most of the participants were those for whom this project was targeted. Being a journalist, I got my dose of inspiration for a few years in advance. I have a few project ideas and what the participants proposed for judging seemed very inspiring, especially because of the background they have. For me this year’s multimedia lab was a breath of fresh air.”
Gulim Amirkhanova, media trainer, Kazakhstan: “I found it interesting that the event was attended not only by journalists, but also by representatives of different NGOs dealing directly with the problems of people with special needs, as well as by people with special needs themselves. The teams were creative and receptive to all the new ideas that came up during the work on their projects. And if on the first day of work the participants had few multimedia ideas, on the second day they all did. It was quite complicated to select only a few initiatives for funding. Some ideas struck me.”
Olga Afanas, pedagogue-psychologist, civic activist, award winner within the lab: “I have been working in the social sector since 2001, especially in the field of human rights, women’s rights and people with disabilities. I found this idea of a multimedia lab on the theme of inclusion extremely beautiful, because today we all, to a greater or lesser extent, promote content, we are producers of content, and for this it is necessary to have multimedia skills, including on the inclusion side. Inclusion is vital for a harmonious, truly free and open society. I was very inspired by the idea of the project, which led me to participate. I collaborate and work among extraordinary women (n.a. with and without disabilities) and I see them as so special, so creative, with so much potential that I am sure they need to be known, to be known to the public.”
"I CAME WITH AN IDEA, BUT I'M LEAVING WITH MORE"
Ludmila Adamciuc, influencer, blog “My Friend”, award winner of the lab: “As a content creator, I admit, it was very useful for me to participate in this lab. Throughout the two-day workshop I listened to expert presentations, made notes, saved useful pages and links, which I am sure will help me in my future work. As a person who stands up for the rights of people with special needs, I submitted a multimedia project based on an information campaign for parents and future parents. I aim to produce several informative video stories, through which I will contribute to raising awareness and acceptance of Down syndrome. I came up with an idea for a project, but I am happy to see that I am leaving the Lab with more ideas that I want to realise in 2023.”
Elena Celak, journalist at Nokta.md portal, participant: “Several times I have carried out materials with people from vulnerable groups. I did longer, shorter reports, but being textual, they didn’t always reach the audience as I would have liked. I applied to this Lab because I wanted to gain experience and knowledge about how to present information in an innovative and attractive format to the public. I believe that through multimedia elements, the materials I will produce will become more viewed, connect more people on social media, gather comments and thus I could contribute to changing the way people with special needs are reflected from victims to people who are doing as well, maybe even better, having faced various difficulties of integration and equity since childhood.”
Ciobanu Marina, manager of PsyNation students’ association, participant: “I applied to this project because the theme of inclusion is very important. I come from the community of psychologists and sociologists and I think that inclusion issues need to be promoted more in society. Together with my colleagues in the team (representatives of the psychology community) we have a nice experience in creating information materials in video and multimedia format. Learning about the theme of the lab, we tried our strengths to create innovative materials for young people in our community.”
WE LEARNED HOW TO APPROACH THE TOPIC OF INCLUSION ON A DIFFERENT LEVEL
Iulia Vlasiuc, journalist at LIK TV, Ribnita city, participant: “Multimedia projects are a new topic for me and the colleagues I worked with in the team. I have never produced products in this format before. I understand that it’s complicated, but that’s why I came to this lab – to learn new things, to approach the topic of inclusion on a different level.”
Ala Bargan, professional interpreter in mime-gesture language, Republican House of Culture of the Deaf of Moldova, award winner: “Since a while, the problems of people with hearing disabilities have become the meaning of my life. It all started with a personal case, which led me to study in depth the challenges faced by this community of people in everyday life. In the Multimedia Lab I came up with the project “Your hands can talk too!”. There are around 5,000 registered hearing-impaired people in the Republic of Moldova, who face serious communication barriers because too few of them know sign language.”
Mariana Pirtac, deputy director of the Lyceum “Da Vinci” of Chisinau city, participant: “Almost in every class we have 1-2 children with disabilities and, as a teacher, I have to develop my own strategies to work with these children. I came to the Laboratory because I felt the need to communicate with people working in the field. During the two working days I learnt a lot of useful things, I have many ideas so when I come back home, I will discuss them with my colleagues and also with the pupils to see how we can implement them.”
The multimedia lab “Innovation for Inclusion” is held in the framework of the project “Building cohesion in Moldova through promoting social inclusion and diminishing discrimination” by the Independent Journalism Center within the program “Joint Initiative for Equal Opportunities – Phase II”, implemented from the resources provided by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).