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.”

Working out a Work Plan

13 Jun

Pascal getting a lot done in a little amount of time
Pascal Works at the Amnesty International Resource Center

Freddy and Pascal work on computers generously provided by the Amnesty International office in Kampala, but they are not guaranteed access every day. Because there are only 2 desk-top computers in the resource center here at Amnesty, Pascal and Freddy must share with those people who come to Amnesty, seeking refuge or assistance, on a daily basis.

Right now, as I begin to help these two men build their ICT (Information and Communications Technology) skills, I realize just how much of a foundation we must build in order to be effective advocates for the indigenous peoples of central and eastern Africa. We have to find computers, preferably donated ones, that will exclusively belong to Freddy and Pascal. Accordingly, Dana Burns, in the AP office in D.C., has found us a few listings of insurance companies and banks here in Kampala who recycle their computers every 2 to 3 years. We are currently working on a proposal to request free computers from them. In the meantime, we are making do with the limited access Freddy and Pascal have. Of course, I have full-time access to the internet, because I brought my own computer with me, but because, as a Fellow for The Advocacy Project, I must work all day, every day, I cannot easily hand over my computer to the boys. And, quite simply, it would be merely a band-aid solution to the problem if I did. They certainly won’t have my computer when I leave, so we must find a more suitable, long-term solution.

For the next 2.5 months, we must find formulas and answers that will help Freddy and Pascal disseminate information that can be effectively created within the parameters of their current working conditions. For us to truly implement a plan that will help educate all the people they advocate for, we must start from the ground up. After that, I will guide these two men (who are already extremely tech-savvy dudes) down a road that will be dotted with press releases, video blogs, documentaries, newsletters and a fresh, brand-spanking-new website.

And when I leave this place on August 24th (sigh, I miss them already), they will, once again, fly solo. But, this time, with a bigger plane 😉

If anyone has any amazing suggestions or knows of someone who wants to get 2 wonderfully functioning computers off their hands, let us know!

Freddy Works at WPIO/Amnesty
Freddy Transcribes Hand-Written Notes to an Amnesty Laptop, lent by Willy Mukendi of Amnesty

For more information on the causes of WPIO (and to see how we are presently disseminating information), go here.

Posted By Juliet Hutchings

Posted Jun 13th, 2008


  • Gail Green

    June 21, 2008


    Your passionate writing will encourage those who read the blogs to try to help; to find ways to help you and F & P accomplish their goals, or at least get positive movement! I haven’t seen your documentaries, but I imagine that they will carry the same passion in their message. I don’t have a thought as to how to supply you/them with computers but I haven’t had a lot of time to think on it….. So know that we are thinking and praying for ways for this to succeed. And keep us posted in the blogs and email (if you have time for both I’d be surpised, however!).

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