Media Lab puts migrants’ rights in the spotlight

Activists and web designers from seven countries across Eastern Europe, Russia and Central Asia attended a Prague Civil Society Centre media hackathon in the Czech Republic to explore how to design engaging multi-media stories.

Experts helped activists combine cutting-edge design with original interviews, videos, photos and research to create multi-lingual websites and articles.

Home On the Border, which was created at the Media Ideas Lab, tells the story of the descendents of the Black Sea Germans – colonists who moved to modern day Transnistria (then part of the Russian Empire). Won over by generous tax breaks, a nineteenth-century PR campaign by Tsar Alexander I, and scared by Napoleon’s march through Europe, Germans settled in a number of new villages along the Transnistrian valley, across Crimea and in other areas around the Black Sea between 1800 – 1810.

The website features interviews with the German descendants who still live in one of the modern villages, Gluckstal, despite decades of disruption, including the expulsion of 400,000 Germans from European Russia following the Nazi invasion in 1941.

Half a dozen locals were interviewed by the team of four, comprising a journalist, photographer, video editor and web designer. The long-read article is displayed as an online book, spliced with videos, high-definition photographs, archive documents, interactive maps and collections from the local Kolosovo and Glinoe museums.

Other groups who attended the Prague Civil Society event created websites designed to raise awareness of migrants rights, including one exploring Pakistani migrant communities.


 

Technology & innovation labs

Our technology and innovation labs cover everything from cybersecurity and drone journalism to ad campaigns and investigative reporting. At a time when tried-and-tested methods of campaigning are losing relevance, we believe creativity is crucial to helping civil society reconnect with their communities.

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