ECOREPORTER – citizen journalism workshops

The project, “Eco Reporter,” was aimed at students of junior high schools located in small towns in Małopolska province.

As part of the project, we conducted a series of 10 two-part, interactive workshops, through which students had the opportunity not only to learn about the natural assets of their region, but also to explore the secrets of citizen journalism, describing important environmental problems and promoting a pro-environmental attitude.

Interactive activities “z piórem i kamerą” (meaning: “with pen and camera”) that deepen knowledge of the region and prospects for change will show middle school students the possibilities of influencing other members of society, whether their peers, parents, teachers, neighbors.

During the first part, the participants learned the basic principles of nature protection and deepened their knowledge of the natural values of Małopolska and especially of their neighborhoods. They learned the principles of writing articles on socio-ecological topics, methods of searching for information and interviewing techniques, thanks to which their articles were enriched with individual opinions of local residents on the issues raised. During the class, the students prepared to write articles, which were published in a newspaper that was issued at the end of the project. Afterwards, the students and their instructors went out into the field with a camera and interviewed representatives of the local community about the topics of concern raised in the workshop.

Let’s give voice to the younger generation!

“Too rarely do we give voice to the youngest generation, and even less often do we listen to what their representatives have to say to us. We expect that ‘when the time comes’ they will be able to demonstrate social responsibility, learn to make decisions on their own and stand up for themselves. Instead of fostering a sense that their views are important to us, we allow them to not even be verbalized.
The “Eco Reporter” project was designed to arouse junior high school students’ interest in their immediate environment, to make them reflect on the young person’s place in society, and, perhaps most importantly, to show them that their opinions are important to adults.
During the workshops, we help in the search for topics for reporter activities, urge them to reflect and ask questions. We give the tools necessary for further exploration of means of expression. We encourage people to act, make choices and evaluate events and phenomena. In this way, we show that the responsibility for what happens in our environment rests with each of us, regardless of age. We also teach that passivity is not the solution.
Young people like and are able to organize themselves, if the goal they choose is worth the effort, so our main task is to point out this goal and assist with advice and sharing of experience in the field of ecology, and improvement of journalistic skills. If we can get the students to seek their own topics, to see what is positive in their environment and what needs to be changed, we will be able to say that we have succeeded. The rest will become beyond us.”
Kinga Szumilas, Kinkajou Interactive Agency