Odacy Davis


Screening Community-owned Best Practices

North Rupununi participants meet to screen videos & photostories

August 14, 2013

A screening session of the six community–owned best practices (videos and photostories) was conducted on Tuesday 13th August 2013 at the Bina Hill Learning and Research Centre, Annai Rupunui. This activity brought together the Champions of the best practices and the COBRA Team to screen and evaluate the current draft of the documents. Among the 21 participants in attendance were representatives of Rewa, Surama, Rupertee, Annai and Kwatamang Villages, Toshaus of Annai and Rewa and an international volunteer based at Bina Hill.

This activity commenced at 10:30hrs and concluded at 17:30hrs. Ryan Benjamin (Cobra Staff) introduced the objective of the exercise and the agenda of the day. An overview of the project and best practices was delivered by Lakeram Haynes (Cobra Staff) while Odacy Davis highlighted some challenges and achievements faced by the local team during the development of the videos and photostories.

In the first session, participants were shown the first draft of the six videos and were given an opportunity to provide feedback at the end of each viewing. In the second session, participants were placed in three groups and each group reviewed two photostories each that were printed for their perusal.The Cobra Team facilitated the discussions with the participants and recorded all feedback given.

Generally, participants expressed satisfaction with the progress of project COBRA, sighting the importance of documenting the best practices of the people of the North Rupununi. One participant mentioned that it’s the first activity of its kind in the North Rupununi and that the team of local researchers was working hard to complete activities and their efforts are commendable. Some participants noted that over the years, the people of the North Rupununi have been losing their culture and way of life and therefore the documentation of best practices was one way of keeping their culture and practices alive.

Regarding the content of the best practices, participant felt that most of the information was captured and in cases where gaps were identified, they provided the source of additional information. For example, the Macushi Research Unit agreed to provide information on their involvement in the programming of Radio Paiwomak during its formative years. Additional photos, video clips, and other crucial data were provided and in some cases promised by the participants.

Several participants felt that there was a need for general editing of the text, ensuring that captions were clear and visible, volume of the videos were regulated and audible. Others felt that they was a need for more video footage to replace too many still pictures that were used in some of the videos.

Lessons Learned

  • Participants are generally happy with the quality of the videos and photostories
  • Based on some of the comments received after the viewing of the videos, the team felt that the message that each “orientor” (existence, resistance…..) was expected to portray was not clearly understood by the participants, not for the lack of information, but lack of understanding of these orientors
  • There is a need for a clear and simple introduction to the orientors at the beginning of each video and photostory as well as information on what they are intended to accomplish, this will guide future viewers in understanding the aim of the best practice.
  • For the purpose of screening exercises, the participants suggested that the COBRA Team develops a list of guidelines that will help reviewers on the feedback process. This can be done by placing a flip chart with guidelines on a wall, discuss and edit them as necessary with the reviewers before the commencement of the screening session, e.g the guidelines can include the following; (appropriateness of length of video, is the information accurate?, what is missing and where can we access this information? is it entertaining and lively?, is it reflecting the orientor? Is the text legible? etc).

In the end, the exercise was very fruitful and informative, the COBRA Team is now better equipped to enhance and finalize these videos and photostories. The Team will aim to conduct a final screening session with the heads of all the communities of the North Rupununi.



QUICK DOWNLOAD: Check out the English version of the COBRA Handbook for Practitioners.