In an effort to free up some space on my hard drive, I was looking through for files to delete or transfer. I came across this short Word document from late 2006 with some brief notes about a possible outreach project in Bolivia. This was the early days of Voces Bolivianas, before it started to take shape when it was decided that El Alto would be the first stop on the blog train. The project still tried to retain much of the original thinking, such as the need for mentors and ongoing support, which is one of the most difficult components of the project since all the participants are so spread out….
Goal: To increase the number of Bolivians in underrepresented areas to know about blogs and feel comfortable with starting and maintaining his/her own blog
Objectives – Blog mentors…
Objectives – Participate in the nationwide dialogue
Objectives – Create a small community in these areas where they support each other
Ten interested university students or older
One partner internet café
Any type of outreach and blog “literacy” program should retain a component of follow-up and ongoing support. The facilitator/mentor will convene 10 university students that have expressed an interest in blogging and learning more about this medium.
During the first three-hour session, the facilitator will introduce the concept of blogging by showing concrete examples of Bolivian blogs, in which the students will be asked to consider the differences between reading an online newspaper where they cannot respond, nor dispute anything.
Students will be shown how to create his/her own blog and invited to write something.
For the next week, students will be given coupons for an hour of internet time at the partner café that was negotiated at a reduced rate.
The facilitator/mentor will comment on the blog and encourage the others to do the same.
$50 stipend for facilitator/mentor
$20 rental for the two afternoon sessions
$22.50 access coupons
$7.50 snacks for two sessions
Do we encourage the students to write content that coincides with GV content?
Who would make a good facilitator/mentor? Not all bloggers are necessarily good teachers, but someone with patience and a commitment to the idea.