Juliet Hutchings

Juliet Hutchings (World Peasants and Indigenous Organization - WPIO): Juliet’s passion for telling stories through film and video took her to the NGO Veronica’s Story, and then to Ethiopia where she documented how the international community is working to eradicate the AIDS virus and help orphans find safe, healthy homes. She worked on several documentaries during her undergraduate studies at Northeastern University in Boston. Juliet has also made an historical film about how children perceived the Communist regime in 1950s Central Europe, in Prague, Czech Republic. She has also made a short film about the nonprofit organization HIPS, Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive. At the time of her fellowship, Juliet was in her final year of an MFA program in film & electronic media at American University in Washington, DC. After her fellowship, Juliet wrote: “There are always benefits to these community connections: time and again, no matter who I talk with about my experiences in Africa, I hear the refrain, “It’s people like you who are helping people like me, one at a time, to understand what the world is like, and that there is a group out there (the pygmies) who are in deep danger and need assistance.”

My Learning Curve

25 Jun

I am still so green. As I start to balance my responsibilities as an Information Communication Technology (ICT) Trainer/Expert, as a documentary filmmaker and as an advocate for human rights, I am stumbling a bit. I have managed to make a comprehensive schedule (or as Freddy and Pascal call it, “program”) for our training. If we pack it into full 8-hour days, the training on various topics will take a full three weeks. However, right now, I await Freddy and Pascal’s return volley of their own schedule of things that must be done in order for them to stay at the forefront of human rights for the peasants, indigenous tribal groups and pygmies of eastern Africa. Once I receive that, this 3-week intensive training will, most likely, turn into a 6-week mini class.

Second, I am wrestling with video. Not with shooting it, per se, but with sharing it. I have shot quite a bit of footage: of me getting settled, of the city streets and people of Kampala and of my new flat; but to what end? Even though I have access to the Internet, all day, every day, the connection is, well, African. Thus, the only video that I have “successfully” uploaded to my youtube account is, to put it mildly, horrible. The pixelation is rampant because I compressed it to be small enough to upload in a timely manner. Oy. I had a friend in D.C. watch it for me on youtube and he said it was simply miserable to view. So, folks, as I wrestle with my training schedule, and work towards going out into the field with Freddy and Pascal in the coming weeks to shoot footage of peasants and tribes in southwestern Uganda, I will also try to find a solution to my video uploading issues.

Finally, I find that as a de facto human rights advocate (well, I guess I’m de jure, but sometimes I feel like an impostor compared with Freddy & Pascal), I am still learning the lingo. Migrant, peasant, indigenous, refugee. All are very different things. Of course, in the end, each one of these groups is peopled with, well, people. And it is Freddy and Pascal who remind me that it is these people that I am working for. The ICT, the video, the lingo; it is all for the eventual liberation of people who deserve to know and practice their natural-born human rights. Bear with me as I learn more every day. 😉

Posted By Juliet Hutchings

Posted Jun 25th, 2008


  • Gail Green

    June 30, 2008


    Juliet, I cannot imagine the huge learning curve for you and for Freddy and Pascal, intermixed as it is with different life backgrounds and cultures, and the dangers of working for peace, love, joy, freedom and earth shoes. But only if we keep on trying to share with, and hear, other people will we succeed in any sort of valuable assistance and exchange of views. I hope with the newest incident you emailed about, that you can safely continue your work. You rock, girl!

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