Thursday, August 18, 2011

One of the PSA's at YOUTH MEDIA programme in Belize

ORANGE WALK, BELIZE: Today the kids here at the YOUTH MEDIA programme finished up their PSA's (public service announcement). The groups were assigned some of the fundamental and universal rights of children. This group was assigned the concept of NUTRITION. The kids came up with the concept, wrote the PSA, shot it and assisted in the editing process.

The goal of the programme is not only geared to exposing the kids to media and the process of media but also to empower them. You could see this group take charge of their project in terms of fleshing out the locations, the concept and the shooting. One kid had been quiet for most of the programme and stuck to himself and friends from his area of Belize. But getting involved in the PSA you could see him asserting himself and really coming out of his shell. That's what this programme is about.

This programme is being sponsored by UNICEF, YOUTH MEDIA, UWI Open Campus: Belize and Dateline: Belize.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Day Three - Youth and Media in Belize - PHOTOS

Highlights from the morning session of day three of the Youth in Media programme.

Damacio Tosh working on some youth rights statements.
Students set up their facebook pages.
Jeffrey working on the script for his group's PSA.
Toledo folks working on their statements about the rights of children.

Day Three morning at La Estima.
Day Three morning at La Estima.
Rudolph (the next PM of Belize) works on his statements.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Day one and two at UNICEF - Youth & Media


ORANGE WALK, Belize – The first two days of the Youth in Media Programme has been an interesting experience and at the same time FUN!!!

I’m here as a part of partnership between UNICEF and UWI in a programme called YOUTH IN MEDIA. It’s designed to introduce kids to media, media usage and awareness.

As always there are some quiet kids and some really REALLY outspoken kids and of course the clown.

Like much of the Caribbean things kicked off with the Belize National Anthem—and that’s a long one. Unlike some others theirs tells a story of the country’s independence. It’s really nice.

The UNICEF representative told the kids about the rights they have as children and why their rights are so important. It was eye-opening for the kids.

The first few sessions over the two days for me was introducing the kids to ways to interview and why interviewing skills are important even if they don’t want to get into the news business. Some got their first experience using a microphone and we hope to get them out to conducting their own interviews by tomorrow.

The kids come from all over Belize from Belize City, Dangria Town, Belmopan, Toledo and they aren't just learning about interviewing. We are conducting sessions on writing, video, photography, and social media use--REALLY EXCITING!

After lunch on the second day we decided to get every group of kids to produce their own PSA (public service announcement) in a converged environment focusing on education, equality, health, protection and shelter—all part of the rights of children.

In our brainstorming session some of the kids had some great ideas for the PSA's but also some great ideas about how to improve their country.

On a side note (I’m not sure why) one of the other instructors and I decided to act as lifeguards/supervisors during a free swim at the nice indoor pool here on the beautiful compound of La Estima. That is going to be interesting.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

When I fell in love with hip-hop .....

As I wrote about the release of Kanye West's / Jay-Z's album WATCH THE THRONE, one of my friends (Jennifer Martin) reminded me about a trip we took with NABJ to the 2005 Heineken House Party / Hip Hop's The Power Summit. We had gone to my home country for a short course in radio reporting at the Our Lucaya Beach and Golf Resort in the Grand Bahamas.

Freeport, Bahamas came alive with the top names in hip-hop and really music in general. After a long day, we had heard about a Listening Party for Kanye West. We went to it reluctantly.

As we got there I was mesmerized. Ye had angels in the corner, Common was just on the couch chilling. But then I got knocked down with the richness of lyrics, the passion in his voice, the deepness of his message. He hit out with now classics like "Drive Slow" but then he went back to his freshman album with "Spaceship"--- THAT WAS THE SONG, the song that did it for me. I felt struggle in the lyrics and his voice. Oh did I mention I was like 7 feet from West who was singing this. That was the point that I became a Kanye Fan and fell in love with hip-hop. He talked about struggles in music but I knew the struggle could be any struggle really.

"Y'all don't know my struggle
Y'all can't match my hustle
You can't catch my hustle
You can't fathom my love dude"
--- Spaceship (College Dropout)

"We all self conscious I'm just the first to admit it."
---- All Falls Down (College Dropout)

These were powerful ideas back then and still powerful now. West commented on society and its inequality:

"Cause they make us hate ourself and love they wealth
That's why shortys hollering "where the ballas' at?"
Drug dealer buy Jordans, crackhead buy crack
And a white man get paid off of all of that."

---- All Falls Down (College Dropout)

That was music and music that mattered.

Thanks for that Kanye. Thanks.


CAPTION: Another picture from the Heineken Beach Party. And no Jennifer I aint forget you. I just can't find the original. And YES that's Luda!!! He' short but funny!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

I expect this new album to go HAM....

Just a few more hours before my Itunes starts to download the newest from KANYE WEST and Jay-Z as THE THRONE (the duo) and the name of the Album is WATCH THE THRONE). The album is ONLY available through ITUNES on August 8, 2011 and will be available in stores 8/12/2011.

And if you know me I am a Kanye West fanatic. See pics from GLOW IN THE DARK TOUR in Miami and CANT wait for the release.

This album was recorded all over the place in hotel rooms and throughout France, Australia, New York City, and Los Angeles and was intended first as a five-track EP. Thank goodness for the change of heart especially looking at the track list from iTunes:

  • No Church in the Wild
  • Lift Off (featuring Beyoncé)
  • Niggas in Paris
  • Otis (featuring Otis Redding)
  • Gotta Have It
  • New Day
  • That’s My Bitch
  • Who Gon Stop Me
  • Murder to Excellence
  • Welcome to the Jungle
  • Made in America
  • Why I Love You (featuring Mr Hudson)
  • Illest Mutherfu&$er Alive
  • H.A.M.
  • Primetime
  • The Joy (featuring Curtis Mayfield)
This line-up and colabs sound as if this could be a keeper (well ALL of Kanye's albums are keepers) especially with a team-up with Mr. Hudson again. You remember his voice on Paranoid (808's) Supernova (colab with Kanye) and who teamed up with Jay-Z on Forever Young (The Blueprint). Beyonce is surprisingly featured as well (sarcastic voice).

If you pre-order on iTunes you get one track immediately--OTIS (featuring Otis Redding) even though it has been leaked on the internet for sometime.

Also THE THRONE TOUR is launching as well. Check it out here>>> Im hoping someone finds a way to get me there. HINT HINT! There's a stop I think in Chi-town but I suspect that one will be CRAZY. Here's the list of tour dates and three aren't highlighted for no particular reason (sarcastic voice):

10/29/11 - Atlanta, GA @ Philips Arena

10/30/11 - Greensboro, NC @ Greensboro Coliseum

11/1/11 - Baltimore, MD @ 1st Mariner Arena

11/2/11 - Philadelphia, PA @ Wells Fargo Center

11/3/11 - Wasington, DC @ Verizon Center

11/5/11 - East Rutherford, NJ @ IZOD Center

11/6/11 - East Rutherford, NJ @ IZOD Center

11/14/11 - Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ BankAtlantic Center

11/21/11 - Boston, MA @ TD Garden

11/22/11 - Montreal, QC, CA @ Bell Centre

11/23/11 - Toronto, ON, CA @ Air Canada Centre

11/26/11 - Detroit, MI @ Palace Of Auburn Hills

11/27/11 - Pittsburgh, PA @ CONSOL Energy Center

11/29/11 - Kansas City, MO @ Sprint Center

12/1/11 - Chicago, IL @ United Center

12/3/11 - New Orleans, LA @ New Orleans Arena

12/5/11 - Houston, TX @ Toyota Center

12/6/11 - Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center

12/9/11 - Las Vegas, NV @ MGM Grand Garden Arena

12/10/11 - San Jose, CA @ HP Pavilion

12/12/11 - Los Angeles, CA @ Staples Center

12/16/11 - Tacoma, WA @ Tacoma Dome

12/18/11 - Vancouver, BC @ Rogers Arena