Promoting social inclusion for Afro-Colombian youth

Tue, 21 Sep 2021 08:44:00 BST

University of Manchester researchers in the project “Cultures of Anti-Racism in Latin America” (CARLA), funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), have been developing collaborations with various artists in Argentina, Brazil and Colombia to see how art can be used to challenge racism in those countries. AHRC funds, channelled through the University, have been supporting Black and Indigenous artists working against racism and towards social inclusion.

Recently Carlos Correa, one of the researchers based in the School of Social Sciences, worked with a Colombian organisation, Corporación Afrocolombiana de Desarrollo Social y Cultural, CARABANTÚ (Afro-Colombian Corporation for Social and Cultural Development).

CARLA funds were used to support some photographic workshops in low-income neighbourhoods of the city of Medellín. The workshops delivered training to 120 young Afro-Colombian people in the use of video cameras and encouraged them to develop mini-video projects on the theme of black leadership. Nine videos, all shot by Afro-Colombian young people, were shown as part of the 6th International Festival of Afro Community Film (1-5 September 2021), which had as its theme Afro-Colombian leadership. An exhibition of photographs was also featured in the Festival and remains on show in the Colombo-American Centre in Medellín until 1 October. The videos will form part of an online exhibition that will be one of the main outputs of the CARLA project, to be launched in March 2022.

In a letter of thanks to CARLA, the director of CARABANTÚ said “We feel very honoured because it was possible to build dialogues for the construction of social transformation using film as an ethno-educational tool. [The festival] achieved the objective of recognizing the actions of Afro-descendant activists … who, through their work in the territory, make a significant contribution to the construction of the city and the country.”

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