Villages Connected Blog

It’s time to re-brand poverty! by de Villiers van Zyl

We believe in a world where business means mutual benefit.

We believe in a world where media means discovering potential.

We believe in a world where success means counting the lives added value to.

We believe it is time to start doing things a bit differently.

Ever feel like you’re bombarded with messages of African disaster and despair?

That’s because you are.

Africa is full of potential, but we’re only told about African poverty. Potential will come out loud and clear only if everyday Africans make the media.  They can seize opportunity and even make media add value to all our lives.

We’ve been busy laying the groundwork for our innovative model that supports Africans to create media that unlocks the potential around them.  The time has come to share some great news!

Today we are excited to announce the upcoming startup of the first Villages Connected media co-op – in the Ugandan town of Fort Portal. Together with 20 local citizen journalists we’re launching a collaborative effort:

Unlocking Potential: Re-branding Poverty – Fort Portal, Uganda

How will Villages Connected’s make this happen?

Community Media – the media co-op will produce content to show Fort Portal’s reality and identify Ugandan opportunities.

Microfinance and business training: co-op members will use media to identify small business opportunities that will fight poverty and make a difference locally. We’ll support the community members they identified to unlock their entrepreneurial potential.

Community Advertising: We’ll link the media co-op with their first client – a carefully chosen socially responsible businesses – Tigh-na-Mara Resort and Spa.  This is not charity. The co-op creates an ad that expresses joint values– values shared between Africans, the socially responsible business and you. An ad that helps drive our goal of making our world a better place.

To hear and see exactly how these concepts work and how you can contribute, click through to the Unlocking Potential: Re-branding Poverty campaign page

The Fort Portal project will start on June 3rd, 2011 and the Villages Connected team will be in Uganda for a month. During this time you will meet the media co-op’s founding members, see their first photographs and films, and get to know the opportunities and entrepreneurs around them.

The media coo-op members  create will be yours to share. Keep an eye on the Villages Connected Blog where we’ll also share with you our vision for the project, personal stories and other preparations for the trip.

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Let’s get busy re-branding poverty!


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