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Posts about empowerment

25 October 2007

Our experience, overall, has been that local people are really out in front on organizing [the anti-genocide] issue, and we’re just creating the tools, putting the tools in their hands, and giving them the resources to take action. For instance, the 1-800-GENOCIDE Hotline, the Darfur Scorecard, things like that are giving people the resources to take action.

In our experience, they’re already out there doing a lot of stuff. I know when we began a couple of years ago, and were just sort of starting our outreach on FacebookFacebook is a social network encouraging real identity — each user has a single account under their full, real name. Facebook began among US college students but has quickly expanded to people of all ages around the world., we found there were already dozens of Facebook groups around the issue and working on these issues. It was just about networking them, giving them resources, giving them support in the work they were doing. That’s what we’ve been trying to do since then.

4 December 2006

Offering concrete ideas for how to solve a seemingly insurmountable problem can give people a sense that they, as individuals, have a stake in an issue. The Genocide Intervention Network links to a list of “ten things you can do to stop genocide.” Ivan Boothe argues that these steps, broken down into easily digestible chunks, give people an easy way to participate. Although they also link to the Genocide Intervention Network’s main web site, that isn’t always the point. “A number of these steps aren’t even within our organization,” Boothe says. This sort of advocacy is similar to bottom-up, open-source collaborative projects like Wikipedia, in which no one group has proprietary ownership over an idea or a product; instead, the goal is a constant generation of awareness and ideas. A MySpaceMySpace is a social network that is not built around a single identity. Users can and do have multiple profiles, with no restrictions on the “names” they use. MySpace is used by many musical groups. page, says Boothe, isn’t simply an advertisement for an organization, “it’s a tool for mobilizing people for different kinds of action.”

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