MIND's participatory filmmakers teach marginalised groups how to capture their views and stories on film. Even people who never held a camera in their lives before can learn how to constructively use film as a medium to spark dialogue. MIND's curriculum consists of a series of hands-on exercises through which participants learn-while-doing.
Coached by professional researchers and filmmakers, participants acquire the following basics:
- Operating camera and sound equipment
- Framing & presentation
- Scenario building
Filmmaking is a highly enlightening process that encourages participants to critically reflect on their own situation and social environment. While choosing topics, building storylines, and interviewing people for their film, participants unavoidably have to think about their own believes, assumptions and experiences. The dialogues that take place in this process are extremely enlightening for the editors: the issues that are most heatedly discussed by the filmmakers are likely to resonate most with the peer audience.
For MIND, producing a film is not the end goal but the beginning of a participatory process. We want our films to be actively used as tools to promote public dialogue on issues of social exclusion and marginalization. That's why we engage in policy dialogues and Mobile Cinema activities at the grassroots. See for instance our projects FAST (Films as Advocacy & Sensitisation Tools) and Tomorrow is a New Day. Our award-winning film Daughters of the Niger Delta also has been used as a dialogue tool in the DFID-funded Nigeria Stability and Reconciliation Programme (NSRP) and in an International Alert workshop on the gender impact of the upcoming oil production in Uganda.