Empowering Youth Voices - InternewsNext

by Internews
Journalist mentors young journalist Rahma in Chad
Journalist mentors young journalist Rahma in Chad

It’s because of donors like you that we were able to successfully carry out so many inspiring youth-focused programs. As we close out, here’s a look back at what we were able to achieve with your support:

#30: Youth in Pakistan Learn from National Geographic Photographers

Seventeen aspiring photographers, most in their 20s, hailing from varied socio-economic backgrounds and representing the multiple regions of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of Pakistan took part in an intensive Photo Camp organized by the National Geographic Society and Internews, and sponsored by the US Agency for International Development. (More)

#29: ‘I had almost given up on being a journalist’

Equipped with a strong desire to learn more about journalism and produce higher quality work, Sami, a young Tunisian from Ghades, a suburban town outside Tunis, applied to participate in a talk-show training in November 2012 as part of Internews’ Youth Beat project. (More)

#28: Using Public Art to Promote Social Change in Armenia

Public art with a social agenda is something fairly new in Armenia. Young artist and activist Lea recently founded the Eiva Arts Foundation to promote development of social consciousness through art. The organization’s People Daily: Art and Media project, funded by a small grant from Internews, aims to raise public awareness of human rights and social issues in Armenia. (More)

#27: Young Chadian Journalists Work to Keep Radio Stations on the Air

In a country where information is hard to come by, Internews built three community FM radio stations, providing a valuable service to the Darfuri refugee population and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) living in camps in eastern Chad. Because of a lack of trained journalists in the country, Internews helped young people who were novices but eager to learn take lead roles at the stations. (More)

#26: Young Chinese Journalists Travel Regionally to Research and Report on Industrial Production

Six Chinese journalists took part in a reporting trip through Thailand and Vietnam, where they had opportunities to meet with and question government, industry, and NGO leaders involved in industrial production, learning about the impacts on health and the environment. (More)

#25: Fresh Approach to Voter Fatigue Turns Zombies Loose in Ukraine

A video for crowdsourced election monitoring platform ElectUA.org, features zombies roaming the streets of Kyiv. While unsuspecting locals scream upon discovering the walking dead, subtitles explain: “Why are people turning into zombies? Stop the epidemic: follow the elections.” (More)

#24: Student with Disabilities Encourages Afghan Youth to Access Technology, Education

“I want to tell young people in this country to work hard and to focus on their education,” says Mujahid. “Young people should work hard, because the future of this country depends on youth.” (More)

#23: Cui Zheng: A Young Reporter in China Covers Environmental Issues

Cui, 27, is a reporter with Caixin Media, arguably one of the best newsmakers in China. She covers news related to environment, technology, energy, and food safety and publishes instant news and feature stories on caixin.com, and a magazine, Caixin Century Weekly. Prior to her position in Caixin, she worked as a news assistant with The Guardian. (More)

#22: Egyptian Youth Learn About Media, Civic and Social Participation

“I used to watch TV [and] radio, but never realized that I can do film or be an announcer,” said Mohamed, one of 50 Egyptian students who recently took part in two social media camps designed to expand youth participation in Egyptian media. (More)

#21: Young Storytellers Excel in Kenya

Like many young journalists, Rawlings struggled to compete with seasoned journalists, who mainly report on politics. Then he began to carve out a niche for himself in health journalism. (More)

#20: First Central African Journalism University Grads Join Internews Project

The Department of Journalism at the University of Bangui graduated its first class of professionally trained journalists this month, and celebrated their achievement at an Internews-sponsored ceremony. (More)

#19: New Space for Kenyan Youth to Engage in Health Issues

“Where's my Seat?” is the title of a video post on the new youth online platform K-HUG (Kenya Health User-Generated Content). The post explores the government’s push to ensure that public transport vehicles are accessible to persons with disabilities. (More)

#18: Partner Profile: In Malaysia, Youth Use Mapping to Address Religious Understanding

Kota, a youth advocacy organization in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, is conducting a series of interactive mapping projects for youth. Young, trained volunteers explore and learn about their communities on foot, noting and logging religious institutions into an online map that highlights the cultural and religious diversity of the area. (More)

#17: Indonesian Youth Tap into Social Media

With more than 43 million Facebook accounts and 19 million active Twitter users, Indonesia boasts the second highest number of social media users in Asia. (More)

#16: Yntymak Radio Aims to Reconcile Uzbek and Kyrgyz Communities after Violence in Southern Kyrgyzstan

Yntymak (“Accord” or “Harmony”), a public radio station in the southern city of Osh, employs a staff of 14 young journalists, half Kyrgyz and half Uzbek, and broadcasts news and human interest stories that promote positive images of both communities. (More)

#15: Young Ugandan Journalist Uses Video Advocacy to Fight Injustices

Twenty-seven year old Helen is the Media and Communication officer at Refugee Law Project based in the war torn northern region of Uganda, where she has found a passion for video advocacy, using it to fight injustices and human rights abuses. (More)

#14: Egyptian Youth Use Multimedia to Engage Citizens

Yasmine, a young journalist in Aswan, Egypt, established a public campaign using social media tools to address discrimination against women and tribal power in elections. (More)

#13: Citizen Journalists from Afghanistan, Pakistan and India Connect on “Bridges of Youth”

Growing out of a Kabul-based master class on peace and citizen journalism, Pul-e-Jawan (Bridges of Youth) has become a platform and ongoing exchange of ideas for young people involved in media in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India. (More)

#12: Seminars Encourage Youth in Kyrgyzstan to Mobilize Their Communities for Social Change

Through the series of seminars “Youth Ideas in New and Traditional Media,” Internews has been teaching youth in cities and towns throughout Kyrgyzstan to use traditional and online media to help solve local problems. (More)

#11: Youth-Focused Projects Lead the Field at Social Innovation Camp Central Asia 2012

The second annual Central Asia-wide Social Innovation Camp took place from May 31-June 2 in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Fifty young web designers, programmers, bloggers and activists were selected to take part of the event out of 138 applicants from Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. (More)

#10: Young Afghan Women Find Self-Expression with Digital Storytelling

As participants in a Take Back the Tech! training this May in Kabul, several young women found a new opportunity for self-expression through digital storytelling. Through short videos now available online, the women narrated their stories and captured their ideas visually, through drawings and pictures. (More)

#9: Palestinian Youth Speak Out on Haki Shabab

“It’s a program developed by the youth for the youth dealing with their issues growing up in Palestine, using social media as a way to engage with them,” says Alaa, Program Director for Radio Tariq Al Mahaba in Nablus, about the newly re-launched show, Haki Shabab (Youth Talk). (More)

#8: Cross-Border Film Project Gives Turks and Armenians a Glimpse into Each Other's Cultures

Internews brought together young Turkish and Armenian filmmakers (six from each country) to create twelve short documentaries exploring historical, social, and cultural issues. The films, depicting human stories from both sides of the border, provide a unique window into a world that audiences would otherwise never see. (More)

#7: Website on Minority Issues Helps Twin Brothers Achieve Their Goals

Anes and Enis are 16-year-old twin brothers who live in Hadzici, a suburb of Sarajevo in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Anes, an aspiring filmmaker, produced an amateur documentary about his brother, who has cerebral palsy, and the struggles he encounters in daily life. (More)

#6: Citizen Journalist Clubs in West Bank and Gaza Help Young Graduates Build Their Skills

More than a year before the Arab Spring, Internews began Citizen Journalist, a project for a group of newly graduated journalists in the West Bank and Gaza. Ten young men and ten young women were trained in multimedia production and the use of blogs and social media in reporting. (More)

#5: Partner Profile: European Youth Press

The European Youth Press (EYP) supports young journalists throughout Europe by connecting them across borders, bringing them together to cover international events and question politicians, and increasing access to diverse sources and points of view. (More)

#4: Young Afghans Rush to Study Media

Journalists are faced with few opportunities in Afghanistan for increasing their knowledge and technical skills. For the first time in Afghanistan, aspiring journalists, broadcasters and media managers have the opportunity to partake in a highly practical radio, television, print and new media curriculum at the Nai Media Institute’s Diploma in Media. (More)

#3: Partner Profile: iHub

In Kenya, young technologists and innovators have created a unique space for collaboration and incubation at iHub, a community facility with a focus on young entrepreneurs, web and mobile phone programmers, designers and researchers. (More)

#2: M@trixTV Program Excites Central Asian Youth about Technology and Innovation

M@trix is a youth-oriented TV program focusing on the latest developments in Internet and technology, reported by young journalists and reaching an audience of 13-25-year-olds across Central Asia. (More)

#1: Young Afghan Writers Find Expression through Poetry

The Afghan Youth Voices Festival, a year-round series of workshops and events supporting youth-driven media in Afghanistan, ran a nationwide poetry competition for hundreds of young poets last year, and the winning poems were published in an anthology, entitled “Voices of Peace.” (More)


Thank you again for your support! - the Internews Team


Schoolgirls, Said Pur Village: Faryal Mohmand
Schoolgirls, Said Pur Village: Faryal Mohmand

“It is not often that we see positive stories – stories of courage, stories of promise, stories of hope – coming from FATA, but perhaps you all will be the ones to tell them. I certainly have every confidence that you can,” USAID Acting Mission Director Rodger Garner at an Internews and National Geographic photography exhibit in Islamabad.

 Looking back on 2013, it was impossible to achieve the kind of success we saw with our InternewsNext project without your support. It is because of donors like you that we can continue to encourage and enable youth voices from all over the globe, and to ensure that news and information are readily accessible even in the most remote regions of the world.

One of our proudest achievements in 2013 was the production of Internews and National Geographic’s exhibition “Pakistan Through Our Eyes: Emerging Photographers from the Tribal Areas”

Over 300 guests attended the photojournalism exhibit in Washington, D.C. on June 12 that offered a rare glimpse into an area of Pakistan little known for its media vibrancy.

The exhibit, "Pakistan Through Our Eyes," showcased the work of 17 young local photographers from the country's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), a rural and geographically isolated region hemmed in by mountains in the northern part of the country. The tribal region is home to some three million people, yet is rarely traveled by international or Pakistani visitors.

Seventeen aspiring photographers, most in their 20s, hailing from varied socio-economic backgrounds and representing the multiple regions of the FATA took part in an intensive Photo Camp organized by the National Geographic Society and Internews, and sponsored by the US Agency for International Development.

Watch a short video of the camp.

“This camp polished my photographic skills and enabled me to see the world through new dimensions,” said student Seema Gul, 23.  “My trainers are an inspiration for me, and after completing my education I want to pursue a career as a photojournalist.” View a slideshow of the student’s photos. See the photos on the National Georgraphic web site.

The young photographers, selected from more than 250 who applied for the six-day camp, were mentored and trained by National Geographic contributing photographers Amy Toensing, Tyrone Turner and Matt Moyer. The students learned the basics of photography as well as photographic vision, equipment and technique, and were guided through the process of creating a story through photography and writing. In this video, the mentors share their experiences.

The camp began in Islamabad, where the participants met the National Geographic photographers and staff, and began an intensive course in photojournalism, involving a combination of classroom instruction and applied skills development in the field. At Rawal Lake, the students had the opportunity to photograph families enjoying the weekend, where they experimented with capturing the subtle interactions of people in public and photographing them. Next, the students explored historic Said Pur Village in parallel with the Truck Art Market in Rawalpindi, capturing people at work in a variety of everyday situations. Finally, in Murree, the students had an opportunity to combine and practice all their new skills, capturing grand panoramic views as well as intimate moments between individuals.

“I love photography and I’m lucky to attend Nat Geo Photo Camp with the collaboration of Internews,” said Faryal Mohman, 23. “Every day I enjoy taking photos from different angles.”

The young photographers later travelled to Washington D.C. to exhibit their work to over 300 guests at the United States Institute of Peace.

About Photo Camp and National Geographic:

National Geographic Photo Camp has provided programs for more than 1,000 young people in over 60 locations since 2003. Photo Camp venues from earlier this year included Baltimore, Md., and Haiti. Internews co-sponsored a previous camp for youth in Crimea in 2010, which were showcased in a gallery at the Paley Center for Media in New York. The National Geographic Society is one of the world’s largest nonprofit scientific and educational organizations. Founded in 1888 to “increase and diffuse geographic knowledge,” the Society works to inspire people to care about the planet. National Geographic has funded more than 10,000 scientific research, conservation and exploration projects and supports an education program promoting geographic literacy. For more information, visit www.nationalgeographic.com.

Laundry Store, Rawalpindi: Seema Gul
Laundry Store, Rawalpindi: Seema Gul


Egyptian woman participates in Internews workshop
Egyptian woman participates in Internews workshop


On behalf of Internews, thank you so much for your participation and support of this project. It is because of donors like you that we can continue to do this important work – supporting young leaders to harness the power of media and emerging technologies to help themselves and their communities. More importantly, your support helps leverage new and existing media platforms to ensure the freedom of information around the world, empowering everyone to raise their voice and be heard.

We want you to know exactly where your donations are going and how they are truly making an impact in young people’s everyday lives. Below you’ll find just one example of a project your donation is helping to fund.

Again, thank you for your contributions and ALL you do to support our mission!

Young Women in Egypt are Empowered to Make their School Safer

Through its Future Leaders program, Internews empowers students in Egypt to make changes in their communities. 

 El Nil School for Girls is located in the Giza governorate’s Imbaba district, which has deteriorated economically since the 2011 revolution that ended Mubarak’s rule. The district is a well-known drug trafficking center; at night after school hours, drug addicts jump over the school walls and use the playground as a hideout for drug abuse. Each morning students find drug paraphernalia.

 “Years ago, school security didn’t get much attention; however, these days, it seems that drugs and violence have infiltrated every nook of society,” said Laila Abdelkawy, El Nil School principle.

 Through its Future Leaders project in Egypt, Internews partnered with Hawaa El Mostaqbal NGO to work with the students at El Nil School to improve security and safety. The project works with young people in Egypt through social media camps that empower them to use media tools to address issues in their communities.

 Internews trained 100 participants at El Nil School for Girls on civic participation principles and social initiatives. Out of the 100 trained, 15 students then took the initiative to help secure their school from drug dealers by heightening their school fence. 

 Additionally, to keep students safe, Internews’ partner NGO will be holding lectures aimed at building self-defense awareness among girls, as well as teaching them how to defend themselves against drug dealers and sexual harassment.


Through Future Leaders, students in Egypt have learned skills for teambuilding, leadership and civic engagement to make changes in their schools and communities.  Your support helps us to continue sustaining this and other Internews projects that support open access to information and the power to connect individuals and communities.

Let’s continue to work together on this - tell your friends and family about our project, and share why our mission is important to you on your social networks. Most importantly, please continue to donate and encourage others to do so, too, until we can reach our goal!

We know that when all people have access to the news and information they need to adapt and respond to the events that shape their world, our world will be a better place. Thank you once again for your support.

Internews Future Leaders Program Trains Youth in Civic Engagement

The Coptic Preparatory School for Boys, one of the oldest public schools in the Al Minya Governorate in Upper Egypt, has fallen into a state of disrepair. In part of the building, crumbling walls at risk of collapse forced the administration to move the 490 students into just nine classrooms, lined with broken desks and chipping paint.

Dilapated classroom before cleanup
The classrooms at the Coptic Preparatory School for Boys had broken desks and chipping paint.

“The school is in very bad shape… We don’t have a useable sports field for exercise or proper classroom facilities that are necessary for our education,” said an eighth grader named Khaled. He described how the students would go all day without using the restrooms because they were unmaintained and extremely unhygienic.

In late 2012, thirty-three students at the school participated in Internews’ Future Leaders program, a series of trainings that teaches young people between the ages of 13 and 15 about civic responsibility and citizenship. Students learn how to identify and solve community problems and produce short documentary films, radio programs, or social media campaigns to call attention to the issues.

As soon as the training began, the students knew what problem they would address: their school. But most were skeptical that they would be able to change anything.

 The classroom being cleaned up and repainted.
After action taken by the students, the classrooms were repaired and painted.

With guidance from their Future Leaders trainers, the students focused on the problems that had realistic solutions. They scheduled a meeting with the school administrator where they presented the issues, suggested some approaches, and requested assistance in fixing up the school. The students were excited to learn that the school administrator consulted with the Undersecretary of Education in Al Minya, who pledged to look into the school’s problems himself.

Soon after, officials at the Ministry of Education and the administrator at the School Maintenance Association met with the students. Moved by their enthusiasm, the Undersecretary of Education decided to form a committee under the auspices of the Ministry of Education to visit the school and help solve the problem.

The school’s Board of Trustees called a meeting with the newly formed committee and the group of students, where they presented the school with a 15,000 Egyptian pound ($2,100 USD) allocation towards maintaining the building, which included painting the classrooms, repairing furniture, and fixing the bathrooms. The School Maintenance Association also launched an initiative to create a sports field for the students to use, which allowed the school to add a formal physical education class.  

Newly painted classroom with repaired desks.
A newly refinished classroom at the school.

After their successful campaign, the students were invigorated by being able to create actual change in their community. The concluded theirFuture Leaders training with the production of a four-minute documentary film detailing the problems with their school and how they solved them. They then proudly presented the film, “Our Revitalized School,” to the public.

Internews’ Future Leaders program in Egypt is funded by USAID and support from donors like you. Thank you for your contributions to this campaign!


Afghan boy and man with radio: Barat Ali Batoor
Afghan boy and man with radio: Barat Ali Batoor

Twenty-seven year old Helen Fortunate Mayelle is a Media and Communication Officer at the Refugee Law Project based in the war torn northern region of Uganda, where she has found a passion for video advocacy, using it to fight injustices and human rights abuses. 

Mayelle started out in community radio in her home town of Arua. While working at Radio Pacis ("Peace" in Italian), she received training in radio production from Internews and produced radio dramas about social issues, including gender based violence.

When Mayelle worked for NTV in Uganda, she started a program for children - Planet K - that still exists today. Watch an interview with Helen.

We see women and youth just like Helen who use media to create real change in their communities every day. Thank you so much for supporting young journalists through the InternewsNext Global Giving project. It’s amazing what can happen when you invest, $25, $50, or $100 in young people – just a little bit can go such a long way. A relatively small amount helped to give Helen the radio production training and access to equipment that she needed to tell her story. You can enable journalists to empower themselves and their communities by making a donation to the InternewsNext project.

You can be a part of the global movement to encourage free, open access to media and information – won’t you join us? 

A girl paints at the Afghan Youth Voices Festival
A girl paints at the Afghan Youth Voices Festival
frm Photography workshop in Afghanistan
frm Photography workshop in Afghanistan

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Organization Information


Location: Washington, DC - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.internews.org
Project Leader:
Amanda Frankel
Washington, D.C. United States

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