Monday, 23 March 2009

On March 16 and 17, Andree Gacoin, AIDSPortal Facilitator, held a two day workshop in NYC with members of the MenEngage Alliance: Fabio Verani (Instituto Promundo), Pancho Aguayo (CulturaSalud), Theresa Castillo (EngenderHealth) and Lucio Verani.

The objectives of the workshop were to train MenEngage members to use AIDSPortal information services, and to identify strategies to facilitate information sharing and networking with the MenEngage Alliance.

MenEngage is a dynamic alliance of non-governmental organisations that seek to engage men and boys in effective ways to reduce gender inequalities and promote the health and well-being of women, men and children. Since 2007, they have run the 'Men and Masculinities' page on AIDSPortal, and they are now also moderating the 'Hombres y Masculinidades' page on PortalSIDA.

Check out the pages for the latest resources related to men and masculinities - and join AIDSPortal and PortalSIDA to directly add your own case studies, tool-kits, policy briefs or other resources.

Also, you can learn more about the MenEngage Alliance during the upcoming Global Symposium 'Engaging Men and Boys in Gender Equality' which will be held March 30 - April 03, 2009 in Rio de Janerio, Brasil.

Monday, 16 March 2009

What I learned at Info-Activism Camp in India

From graffiti to drama, digital activism, hot coco (cooperation and collaboration), story telling through video, Expanded SMS and Mobiles, sourcing and verifying data, Content Management Systems(drupal, joomla and Pluno), blogs and blogging, wikis silhouette to geo mapping geo wanking, it was a time of innovative learning and building on a diverse range of tactics to enhance civil society activism

Info-Activism is an approach which helps rights advocates tactically utilize information, communications and digital technologies to enhance advocacy work. Tactical Tech believes that new technologies have significant potential to enhance the work of campaigners and advocates, giving them the tools to gather and analyze information and the means to turn that information into action.

The info-activism camp was held in Bangalore, the capital of the state of Karnataka, in Doddaballapura taluk at Green Valley resort This was my first info-activism Camp and I didn’t quite know what to expect, by the end of it I found my self rejuvenated, inspired, relaxed, energized, challenged, invigorated and full of new ideas to apply and share what I learned in an AIDSPortal context.

Over 130 established advocates and experienced technologist and designers from around the world attended. Other participants included: women empowerment organisations, journalists, media, sex workers, sustainable society, Health /HIV/AIDS orgnaiations, philanthropic organisations , environment, civic, technology and research organisations, as well as number of independent consultants. See full list at:

The main aim was to provide an environment where they all can build relationships, exchange knowledge and develop strategies, partnership and skills. Topics were varied and diverse. They included:
• Strategy and issue areas
• Information Acquisition, Analysis and Evaluation
• Outreach and Video
• Visualisation and story telling
• Publishing and Engaging Audiences
• Increasing and Sustaining Participation
• Cooperation and Collaboration
• Telephony and Voice communications
• Security and Privacy

Notes and materials for the above topics are available at:

In examining the effects certain technology designs may have on a particular group of people, one must not lose sight of the nature of technology.
Technology itself is a profound form of social change, which has permanently changed the way humans think and relate to one another. My time in the camp triggered some very exciting feelings. I have learned loads of many new tactics. Now I am thinking ahead- what I need to do with the skill and knowledge.

To find out more about Info-Activism go to

Posted on behalf of Leonard Odini, Resource Centre Manager, KANCO