Humanity in Action Provides Grants to Nine Senior Fellow Projects

Humanity in Action is pleased to announce the winners of the 2012 Senior Fellow Grants Competition.

The goal of this competition is to empower Senior Fellows to create initiatives that embody Humanity in Action's educational mission, increase cooperation among Humanity in Action's global community of Senior Fellows and inspire others to action. The projects address issues related to democracy, discrimination, racism, xenophobia, tolerance and the protection of minorities.  

The funding for this initiative is made possible by a generous grant of the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, Department of War Victims and Remembrance.

The 2012 Winners

Christina Antonakos-Wallace, with WINGS and ROOTS - Immigration Policy Timeline for Interactive Website

“with WINGS and ROOTS” is a documentary and educational project that uses the power of media (film, the interactive website, curricula and workshops) to increase the voice of children of immigrants, reframe the immigration debates and foster more inclusive identities. Juxtaposing two cities emblematic of global migration to North America and Europe, the project focuses on the common struggles and insight of children of immigrants in Berlin and New York who are pushing the definitions of belonging. Using films, workshops, and web-based tools, the project aims to facilitate conversations with young people in European and North American urban centers about the intersection migration, racism, and belonging.

Chad Doobay and Aida Salcic, Toward Durable Solutions for the Internally Displaced in Bosnia and Herzegovina – Interviews of the Internally Displaced

This project aims to take a closer look at the specific challenges facing the internally displaced and to identify how policy makers can effectively bring about durable solutions for the population’s most vulnerable. Senior Fellows Chad Doobay and Aida Salcic will identify one collective center of internally displaced people and spend the course of five to seven days meeting with and interviewing residents. Their goal is that these findings will be of use to NGOs and governmental actors working to provide durable solutions for the internally displaced.

Pavlina Doublekova and Maria Spirova, Diversity On The Other Side Of The Wall: Muslims In Sofia

“Diversity On The Other Side Of The Wall: Muslims In Sofia” is a 7-days workshop for 8 to 10 preselected Senior Fellows to take place in Sofia, Bulgaria. In order to offer the participants a concise introduction into the overall minority-majority dynamics, the workshop’s agenda will focus on the situation of the Muslims in the capital as a particular case study. In addition, the workshop will conclude with a public presentation of the Senior Fellow’s observations, followed by a public discussion. 

Zachariah Falconer-Stout, Marta Kozlowska and Marta Tsvengrosh, Simulation Games for Teaching Human Rights and Active Citizenship in Post-Soviet Moldova

This project aims to develop and run Moldova-tailored simulation games that will compel its participants to address all the contentious historical points typical to nascent democracies transitioning from authoritarian rule. This project has two objectives: To create and run a politically-oriented simulation game for Moldovan youth across the country, and to create and incorporate a culturally-oriented simulation game in the trainings of newly-arrived Peace Corps Volunteers (PCVs) to speed their adjustment to the oftentimes confusing historical and cultural idiosyncrasies of Moldova. This project will promote deeper understanding of history’s legacy on democratic processes and civic leadership among its participants, a small but vital grassroots step along the slow path towards full liberal democracy.

Nathan Furukawa and Umar Ikram, Galvanizing Political Engagement among Muslims in the Netherlands by Drawing Inspiration from American Examples of Success

In an atmosphere of rising discrimination against Muslims in the Netherlands, this project seeks to to counter disparaging rhetoric with voices from the Muslim community that assert their dignity and value to Dutch society.  Using research and firsthand interviews, the authors of this report provide recommendations to Dutch Muslim organizations on how to foster political engagement in the Muslim community using the American context as guidance.

Subhash Ghimire and Joshua Cruz Diaz, Teaching Nepali Students the Horrors of Extremism

The goal of this project is to make Nepalese school and college students aware of the consequences of compromising democracy to a fascist leader, as the Nepalese School curricula do not discuss such issues despite a positive portrayal of Hitler in Nepalese popular culture. Subhash Ghumire and Joshua Cruz Diaz want to teach the younger generation in Nepal about the case of 1930s Germany and the horrors of the Holocaust. Their project consists of a traveling photo exhibition, a documentary focusing on Anne Frank and a discussion forum.

Mark Goldberg, The Development and Aid Workers News Service

The Development and Aid Workers News Service is a social enterprise that supports humanitarian journalism and storytelling through sales of a subscription-based news clipping email called DAWNS Digest.

Joseph Kaifala and Liat Krawczyk, Children In Combat: The Memories of Former Child Soldiers In Sierra Leone

This project will produce an oral-history project dedicated to recording testimonies of former child soldiers in Sierra Leone to ensure that the history of the civil war is preserved in order to help prevent a repetition of such atrocities. Full-length testimonies, as well as shorter and more accessible video clips, will be available to the public, accompanied by written transcripts for easy browsing online. The testimonies will ultimately provide future generations and leaders with powerful lessons about the importance of human rights and democratic values in preventing intolerance and violent expressions.

Joseph Kolker and Stephanie Chang, Tanforan: From Internment Center to Shopping Mall

This documentary film is about a shopping mall in California called Tanforan, which served as a temporary internment camp for Japanese-Americans from the Bay Area during their forced relocation in WWII, part of a larger project of internment fueled by racism and indifference at the popular and policy-making levels. The only sign marking this site’s use in a mass abuse of minority rights is a small plaque in the middle of the mall’s parking lot. The film will explore the story of Tanforan, and in doing so, will give Tanforan a proper memorial.

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