Congratulations to the winners of the OS Youth Outreach Fellowships 2012.
The Open Space Fellowships are awarded every year to young social entrepreneurs who use innovative outreach methodologies to help young adults express, explore and engage with issues related to social justice, pluralism and sustainable development.
Of the many applicants this year, we have selected the following four:
Hamida Khatoon from Lucknow, who sold flower garlands and made door-to-door sales calls to finance her education and support her family, and who, in the process, has negotiated the tensions that confront an educated, independent Muslim woman in a poor and conservative community. Hamida wants to help other Muslim girls make the same journey. She will work with underprivileged Muslim women from different localities, engaging them in dialogue and discussion, training them in creative writing and filmmaking, producing with them 25 short films on their lives, aspirations and neighbourhoods. This process will give the young women a voice, fresh perspectives, and the confidence to assert their rights and make their own choices.
Abhinandita Mathur, Delhi-based photojournalist, who will engage diverse groups of young people in creating, enacting and making fictionalised films on the subject of love and romance, exploring in the process issues related to gender, identity, sexuality, patriarchy, influence of media and markets, tradition vs modernity, and social divides. These films will be disseminated and discussed over the social media networks and at youth venues. The stories that emerge in the process will also be widely disseminated to young readers.
Sunil Mohan from Bangalore, a young activist who has gone through a personal political journey and come to terms with his transgressive gender and sexuality identity. Sunil wants to expand the space for human beings to be who they want to be without being boxed into categories. He will build a video archive of stories of people with transgressive identities in four southern states and then weave these stories into a play that will be performed by actors from the community and outside it, for diverse audiences in South India.
Vishal Rawlley, a multimedia artist from Delhi and Mumbai, who will bring students of design, fashion, architecture and IT together with young artisans and tradespersons such as electricians, mobile phone repairers and signboard painters, to explore environmental sustainability and other issues that most affect their neighbourhoods and to represent these in public art and installations. The process will encourage the anti-consumerist DIY (jugaad) approach to solving community problems and will promote innovative and radical forms of collective action, including park radio, flash mobs and streetlight interventions.
Watch this space for details of the work of our fellows as it unfolds!