Pamoja Together: Student Newsroom Exploring Foreign Aid
Pamoja Together is a student-powered global news network that tells the stories of foreign aid from the perspective of the recipient. Pamoja, the Kiswahili word for together, connects students from aid recipient and donor countries in a student-to-student learning process. Student teams are multi-cultural and multi-disciplinary, drawing the best students studying communication, public health, the humanities, and more. The goal: to nurture the conversation about aid; tell raw, authentic, and inspiring stories from the field; and engage a worldwide audience in re-imagining aid by telling it like it is.
In April 2013, students from Great Lakes University in Kisumu and Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology (formerly Bondo University College) and Great Lakes University of Kisumu (GLUK) were trained to use iPads and DSLR cameras to record stories and images of aid projects and recipients in Western Kenya. The Kenyan students established relationships with organizations implementing health and development projects large and small (funded by both international donors and by local philanthropy), and did initial research on possible story ideas. In May, eight students from Boston University traveled to Kenya to work in teams with students at BUC and GLUK to continue with field research, and create high quality productions – video, photography, audio and text – that capture the compelling stories of aid and how it really works (or doesn’t work) from a local perspective.
Pamoja Together is part of Boston University’s Program on Crisis Response and Reporting, an interdisciplinary collaboration between the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting in Washington DC, the BU College of Communication, the School of Public Health, and the Center for Global Health & Development. The project was funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.