MEU Project Awarded Flex Fund 2017 Grant

WITNESS is excited to announce a grant from the Flex Fund for 2017, supported by Skoll Foundation, Ford Foundation, I Just Films, and BRITDOC. Launched in 2016, the Flex fund was created to support the most innovative and creative projects emerging from partnerships between moving image storytellers and social entrepreneurs, and WITNESS is proud to join the ranks of inspiring Flex Fund grantees.

This funding will support our Mobil-Eyes Us (MEU) project which uses live-streamed video storytelling plus task-routing technology to connect the right “distant witnesses” – people who care about the struggles of communities facing rights violations but may not be physically present – to meaningful experience and action. Turning witnesses into engaged actors, MEU seeks to disrupt the bystander effect and mobilize a collective empathic response to human right violations. Initially, the project will focus on telling (and changing) stories from Brazil’s urban favelas, where solidarity and pressure can make all the difference. Most recently a small-scale pilot of the Mobil-Eyes-Us project launched during the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. The pilot in Rio involved collaboration with frontline activists in communities affected by human rights violations to share a series of live-streams and provide ‘distant witnesses’ with the opportunity to witness directly what was happening, and move from being viewers to active witnesses taking action in support of frontline communities.

MEU is a cross-cutting project part of the Tech + Advocacy program at WITNESS, led by Sam Gregory, Program Director.

To learn more about our Mobil-Eyes-Us Project and Tech Advocacy, please click here.

To read more about the Flex Fund, please click here.


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