Wednesday, March 21, 2012

DeAngela's Dish: Social Change through Media and Film

OYE volunteer and film-maker Richard Lakin visiting Rosa Yorleni Sevilla, OYE Scholar, and her family

During this week's DeAngela's Dish, we're interviewing Richard, co-founder of 18 rabbits digital media. 18 rabbits promotes social entrepreneurs, international development, educational institutions, NGOs, corporate social responsibility, non-profits, and community outreach projects through a strategic program of multimedia and internet distribution.

Richard mentioned that after working with OYE six years ago that he always had a desire to come back to Honduras to work with OYE again. He mentioned how impressed he was with the work OYE accomplishes with such few resources. Richard also said OYE is the “most effective” NGO he has seen in action. OYE staff members are actually out in the community helping to effect change in the lives of Honduran youth, which he found impressive.

Richard plans to chronicle and analyze a social media project to raise the visibility of OYE. Children in Honduras will participate in the campaign through their own facebook accounts and other social media venues. The project has been going for about two weeks and seems to be getting attention from many people across the world. The project has definitely created quite a buzz in the OYE office.

So to the interview!

D: What are some of the goals you wish to accomplish working on this project for OYE?

R: I would like to help raise global visibility for OYE which will hopefully lead to more funding sources and develop an “open-source social media strategy.” Last but not least I'd like to create a template for other small organizations to be able to use by chronicling the process with OYE.           

D: How do you feel about the work you have done thus far on the project?

R: The project has been successful in that is has received “hits” from over 70 countries.

D: Have you run into barriers since you started your work on this project?

R: Yes, and the one that is most intriguing is the reluctance of professionals around the world to offer suggestions as to how this project can be made better or what good things the project has done thus far. There are experts across the world that could and/or should be offering more suggestions.

D: How do you think OYE has changed since you last worked with the organization?

R: It is difficult to answer this question because the last time I was here (six years ago) I was only here three days. I was able to observe but so much; I will say that OYE is the “most effective” NGO I have seen in operation. Its’ effectiveness caused me to have a desire to come back and work with them again.

D: What has your experience been like working with OYE staff?

R: I admire OYE staff, volunteers, and members of the executive board, who are out in the “field” doing work. I remember filming Ana Luisa, and at the time she was very sick. She was recovering from Malaria. Ana Luisa’s story is a prime example of what individuals see when they come to OYE. Staff are actively involved and engaged in the change process for Honduran youth, no matter the circumstances.

Although this was a short interview it was a pleasure getting to interview the person who is behind this fascinating initiative. Richard Lakin seemed surprised when he first heard of being interviewed, but he humbly and thoughtfully answered the few questions. He also shared how many views (hits) the website has received today (66).

R: And I haven’t even posted anything new today. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn seem to be the places in which most people view the project.

After reading this blog please be sure and check out the blog

DeAngela Alexander is an OYE intern and student at Mary Baldwin College.  

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