“Communication capacity building for women and youth to raise awareness of forest protection”: Training in Truong Son commune, Quang Ninh district, Quang Binh 21-22 November, 2016

  • The CIRUM team has recently completed training in Quang Binh province to enhance awareness of forest protection through communications capacity building. The training involved the introduction of basic film and photography skills in order to empower women and young community members to tell their stories.


    The training is a part of CIRUM’s Personal/Participatory Video (PV) program, which develops communications capacity with a focus on young community members in order to tell their stories of land and forest rights issues. The videos are then used to raise awareness of these issues and lobby for change.


    The training in Truong Son commune, Quang Ninh was co-organised by CIRUM and the Rural Development and Poverty Reduction (RDPR) Fund under the EU-funded project ‘Promoting Land Rights for Ethnic Minority People in Vietnam’.  The training involved 20 young community members in total, including 10 women and 10 Van Kieu ethnic minority (the remaining 10 were Kinh ethnic).

    Participants learnt to use Ipad to take photos and film/ Photo: CIRUM

    On the first day of the training participants leant how to use iPads to take photos and video, and learnt how to write and structure a story through photography. Participants worked in small groups to of 3-4 to allow maximum exposure to the technology, and encourage equal participation. Groups then presented and gained valuable feedback from other participant groups and the facilitators. While the trainees were shy at first to actively engage and use the iPads, they gradually gained confidence and were excited to learn more about editing and film.


    Trainees then watched a short video on the forest land conflict in Lang Son province that was narrated by a local villager. This inspired participants to create their own stories, as they identified with many of issues raised in the video, including lack of land of cultivation, forest land allocation issues and forest land conflicts.  Participants were then ready to select topics for their own stories, and separated into 2 groups to discuss and develop their ideas.

    Participants discussed in groups to structure stories and scripts/Photo: CIRUM


    On the second day, participants prepared scripts for their stories and went to the local village to begin filming. Facilitators assisting in the preparation of scripts and throughout the filming process, encouraging students to shoot footage that would best tell their story. Trainees were encouraged to interview local villagers on land cultivation and allocation issues for their films, and gain active participation from the community. Each participant had the opportunity to use the iPad to shoot edit footage independently.


    Participants and Facilitators of the Training session/Photo: CIRUM

    The two participant groups created 2 short videos, which they will continue to work on with the guidance of CIRUM. The Commune Women’s Union was given 2 iPads to continue their work on advocacy videos, so they can continue to tell their stories with the support of CIRUM and RDPR. The participants thoroughly enjoyed the training. Ms Ho Thi Bong, a Van Kieu ethnic from Ben Duong village, said “ I’m so happy after this training session. Now I know to take good photos and make videos. My phone can take photos, so I will use it to record activities at home and in my community. I will share my photos and videos with people in my villages and other people”.