"This is my truth" – Muungano's second KYC.TV training program capturing community stories to drive positive change
By Jackie Waithaka, SDI Kenya
“Silence on set!
On calling the roll, a flurry of activities comes to a sudden halt and the once buzzing film set suddenly transforms to a tranquil scene. A camera on a tripod pans across a tiny footpath shaggy with plastic waste. Little streams of greasy water push through heavy mud, the occasional lazy stone carried away slowly by the stream. As the camera lens settles on an open manhole at the edge of the footpath, the operator changes to a close-up shot, then the director calls an end to the scene.
We are on location with a Muungano media team taking part in a film training program carried out by Know Your City.TV (KYC.TV). KYC.TV is an international collective of youth living in slums, learning by doing, and making media for social impact. It's the team's second training in Mukuru (the first was in June 2017), which seeks to build the skills of a young vibrant Kenyan federation group.
Using media to drive change
The team are learning different techniques to capture great footage and turn it into great storytelling – aiming to share stories of their communities with a global audience as part of Muungano's aim to trigger positive attitude changes towards and within informal settlements, and to support Muungano's other goals of finding and implement slum upgrading solutions.
Gaining a platform where you get to turn your passion into action is an absolute privilege.
Rose Mutahe, Muungano's KYC.TV team
The batch are learning new film techniques and refreshing previously learnt skills, building a platform where they can sharpen and apply their mastery of the camera, one of the 21st century's most powerful tools. The team's cameras' eyes are capturing the stories of urban poor communities, creating a sharp picture of life lived within the settlements.
The week-long training program also involved learning to work with drones in film making. Drones are changing the game in the film industry, and filmmakers all over the world are using them to capture awesome footage.
This is my story. This is my truth. Is there anyone else who is better suited to tell my story?
John Thuo, Muungano's KYC.TV team.
Stories have the power to colour our words with meaning in a way that a whole slew of other rhetorical flourishes can’t. They humanize us, helping us understand people we’ve never met and things we’ve never experienced. Some off the most powerful stories come from real life experiences. The space created by KYC.TV is a much-desired platform where youth can capture and showcase their day-to-day realities, in a bid to stir up conversations of fruitful change.
Watch the films from last year's KYC.TV training in Kenya on Muungano's YouTube channel.