How to Empower Your Community With Mobile Stories

Local news is critical. It helps us see, know and understand our community. It also can empower us to stand up for justice when there is none. But today, many communities are not getting the news they need from local media.

We need a better way to cover local news, so we can be more informed about our communities. On June 24 at East Los Angeles College, Evrybit hosted a workshop to help reinvent local news.

In this hands-on workshop presented by the East Los Angeles College Student Equity Program in collaboration with the Loyola Immigrant Justice Clinic, LA Voice and and Evrybit, we showed how to empower communities by telling mobile stories and creating mobile newsrooms.

We partnered with Boyle Heights Beat, a youth-led bilingual newspaper in Los Angeles, and KPFK, a progressive radio station in Southern California, to create a mobile newsroom and document the workshop. We created a collaborative story with Evrybit, and two student reporters created individual stories. (Note: Use the scroll bar at the right of each story to view all of the media in each story.)

Below is the story by Xochil Ramirez.

Below is the story by Andrea Galdamez.

Below is our collaborative story.

The workshop was open to anyone interested in empowering his or her community and featured a diverse lineup of speakers.

10 a.m.: Welcome

10:05 a.m.: Invocation — Father Michael Gutierrez, Pastor, St. John the Baptist Catholic Church

10:10 a.m.: Community Empowerment — Martin Garcia, Organizer, LA Voice, Michael Mata, Director, Transformational Urban Leadership Program, Azusa Pacific Seminary

11 a.m.: Know Your Rights — Yanira Lemus, Supervising Attorney, Loyola Immigrant Justice Clinic, Victor Narro, Project Director, UCLA Labor Center

11:50 a.m.: Break

12 p.m.: Lunch

12:10 p.m.: Keynote talk — Dr. Gabe Veas, Social Entrepreneur and Professor, University of La Verne

12:50 p.m. Break

1 p.m.: Journalism 101 — Antonio Mejías Rentas, Senior Editor, Boyle Heights Beat, Claudia Núñez, Digital Director, Hoy

1:50 p.m.: Break

2 p.m.: Mobile Storytelling — Eric Ortiz, Founder, Evrybit

2:50 p.m.: Next Steps

Presenting Organizations

East Los Angeles College (ELAC) is committed to achieving equity amongst its student populations with its Student Equity Program so that all of ELAC’s students meet their educational goals. Established in 1945 as part of the Los Angeles Community College District, ELAC serves more than 20,000 students in the Los Angeles suburb of Monterey Park, and is the largest campus in its district. The college has an international, multicultural student body that complements the 14 communities comprising its primary service area.

The Loyola Immigrant Justice Clinic is a community-based collaboration of Loyola Law School, Loyola Marymount Univeristy, Homeboy Industries Inc., and Dolores Mission Church that was founded in 2012. LIJC’s mission is to advance the rights of the indigent immigrant community in East Los Angeles through legal services, education and community empowerment, while teaching law students how to be effective immigrants’ rights lawyers.

LA Voice is a social justice advocacy organization that has been working with the Los Angeles immigrant community since 2000 — teaching people to speak, act and engage in the public arena and developing hundreds of leaders every year. LA Voice is part of the PICO National Network, one of the largest grassroots community efforts in the United States with organizations in 150 cities and 18 states.

Evrybit is a mobile storytelling platform that streamlines collaboration. Launched in 2015, Evrybit provides a way to organize mobile reporting into one stream using text, photo, video and audio. Its mission is to inform and connect the world through storytelling.

To read more about the workshop, check out this LA School Report story.

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