Empowering Colombian Women to Share Their Stories

Young women from the Semillero MAD programChangeStream Media will travel to Barranquilla, Colombia in December to train disadvantaged women and girls in video production skills.

Colombia has an ugly history of discrimination and violence against women, whose voices are largely suppressed. ChangeStream Media’s projects will empower Colombian women to share their stories, shed light on the problems they face, and present their solutions to societal issues.

Our partner Colectivo Mujeres al Derecho (MAD) has been recognized by the United Nations as a leading advocate for women’s rights in Colombia. They have organized a network of adolescent girls from poor neighborhoods and isolated rural areas around the city of Barranquilla, and provided them with leadership training. ChangeStream Media’s project will give those young women a chance to make their voices heard in their region.

They will learn tools for digital storytelling by creating a video project that they film and edit to make a positive impact in their community.

We will screen their completed videos at a public event, together with other short films that reinforce the message of gender equality. We expect these girls’ videos and the event itself will draw attention from the wider community to the issues affecting young women in Colombia.

We’ll also build the capacity of the MAD organization to do similar media projects in the future by training leaders from the organization in digital storytelling techniques and leaving them with the training materials, software and camera equipment needed to capture and edit digital videos. During our time with the organization, we will provide consultation in improving their Internet presence and connecting with their community through social media.

We need your support for these projects – please donate cash or equipment now!

More about our partner Colectivo Mujeres al Derecho

In Colombia’s Caribbean region, nearly 70 percent of households live below the poverty line, and women are particularly vulnerable. They have higher rates of unemployment and lower rates of schooling than men, and they are vulnerable to violence and discrimination in both the public and the private sphere. MAD was founded by young women lawyers and law students from the city of Barranquilla to empower women through legal support, community organizing, advocacy, and research.

Since 2003, MAD has provided legal support to more than 1,000 women, worked with 34 rural women’s associations in Colombia’s Caribbean region, and convened a network of nearly 300 adolescent girls and young women focused on building young women’s leadership, amplifying their voices, and ensuring that youth-focused public policies and programs address their concerns and priorities.