Giving a Voice to the People

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Summary of the Problem

  1. How will the voices of the people be heard and where will they go?
  2. How do we empower communities?

Macro level

To give some idea on the scale of the problem, we (Indonesian) have

  • 46.5 million students
  • 220+ million people
  • 240.000+ schools
  • 70 million workers
  • 110-120 million cellullar subscriber
  • 30-40 milion Internet users

Unfortunately, most of them are voiceless.

Micro level

  • Would it be possible to integrate blogging into the curriculum? and ask the 46.5 million students to blog say one page per month?
  • Linimas(s)a Social Media Documentary shows its power for @harryvanyogya a becak driver, Blood For Life, Prita etc. Most of them are common Indonesians that use Social Media for good.

Description of the Need

Indonesia needs:

  1. A national campaign for more connectivity, more digital access, better communication channels and more access to knowledge
  2. A structure/system that channels ideas for a wide range of problems and areas

Who Needs This?

  1. Young Indonesians (throughout schools)
  2. Local NGOs and civil society groups
  3. Women groups: non-working mothers who struggle with IT; groups outside of schools
  4. Farmers’ communities
  5. Rural communities and groups

Solution Space

Use Case

Form a committee/coalition/group to spearhead/drive this

  • Identify a home base
  • Recruit partners and allies
  • Find the common question among many NGOs who each have their own issues and emphasis; what are the core/shared goals?
  • Engage NGOs: ICT Watch (safe/healthy Internet efforts + ICT for women); lots of NGOs working in E. Indonesia on women’s issues
  • Can we identify a high-profile/celebrity figure to elevate this to a high level of visibility? YouTube & Friendster & Facebook distribution of ads/Public Service Announcements
  • Research data, statistics and needs among target groups
  • Set specific but attainable goals
  • Develop a plan for sustainability, ownership and resources (funding)

Identify and build a network of partners (existing solutions)

  • Media
  • Existing NGOs
  • ISP Association (give CSR grants for education)
  • ICT Watch
  • Ministries: Communication, Women’s Empowerment, Education, Agriculture
  • High-profile partners
  • Development agencies (USAID)
  • Private sector tech/communication partners
  • Students

Use media and social media to build a campaign and consensus

  • Brand: one common phrase or question that reflects one shared basic critical need
  • Use this to convey and build support/pressure for progress towards these goals
  • Encourage NGOs to: blog? Use social media best practices? Develop online and offline strategies to collect constituent input?
  • Create incentives for participation, recruitment

Run targeted interventions in schools

  • Specific intervention for students: ask computer and IT class students to commit to one blog per month, for example, in order to generate increased activity and digital engagement
  • A development agency could support an innovation challenge to select the best projects launched in schools; enlist one to fund a proposal/entity that would drive this forward
  • Core/pilot group of educators/students/schools who want to be early adopters
  • Utilize the 3 big mailing lists of educators in Indonesia
    • - vocational schools educators.
    • - school network
    • - Indonesian Teacher's Association

Existing solutions or relevant links

What Resources Are Needed

  • Owners/leaders of the committee
  • Funding (for travel/transport; for educational material development; basic administrative supplies and space)

Follow-on Actions

  • Email personal contacts/networks to gauge interest in helping organize
Organization Web e-mail Area
ICTWATCH or Safe / healthy Internet & ICT for women.
COMBINE ICT disaster & community empowerment
Yayasan AirPutih, ICT disaster & community empowerment
One Destination Center ICT for Women.
Onno W. Purbo Empowering Indonesians on ICT
  • Build out section of the wiki: specific next steps, target committee members, target partners, potential funding sources
  • Form committee
  • Interactions / Discussions with all targets / partners.

Background of the Group

Originally the group's topic is about "Policy Advocacy". In the discussion, we realized that to set / win a policy we should have

  • Power (in the government / parliament or influence them)
  • Money
  • Mass / People

As most NGO DO NOT have either power or money.

The most plausible path to win a war in setting up a policy is by creating mass / people influence the policy / policymakers and "hopefully" People's power win as the mass is getting larger.

Mass creation may be performed through education and awareness processes. Thus, the group shifts its gear towards community empowerment to give a voice to people and hoping a the end of the day People's power will rule the earth :) ..