Annual report 2021
In 2021 the r0g_agency’s focus was to continue to support our three ongoing projects: #ASKnet, #MMN, and #defyhatenow.
Each of these projects work towards the r0g_agency’s commitment to fostering open knowledge, open technology, and peacebuilding around the world.
Our goal is to partner with and empower local communities in order to bring about positive change. We do this by providing the
tools and trainings needed in those areas.
The long-term goal is to equip local organizations with the skills and tools needed to run community-supporting programs that are both self-sustaining and beneficial to their local and regional communities.
The r0g_agency works with grassroots, governmental, and international organizations – often to bridge gaps between policy and tangible action on the ground.
The r0g_agency is based in Berlin, Germany and works with communities and organizations in the Republic of South Sudan, Uganda, Cameroon, Ghana, The Gambia, Kenya, and Ethiopia.
Highlights from r0g_projects 2021
(Access to Skills and Knowledge Network)
2021 saw #ASKnet’s hubs in Uganda and South Sudan further develop IT, media, podcasting, and entrepreneurship skills in order to strengthen community selfsufficiency. A Local Experts Action Directory (LEAD) (https://asknet.community/#lead) has been created in order to help connect individuals across locations. #ASKnet is also working on creating a website to make it easier to collaborate and connect.
Satellite hubs were established in 202, including a satellite in Yei, South Sudan by members of Platform Africa, who are based in the Rhino camp refugee settlement but originally came from South Sudan. Another satellite was established in the Pagirynia refugee settlement in Uganda.
The evolving confidence of the #ASKnet hubs has led to exciting new undertakings this past year, including their hosting Repair Cafés and starting the #ABV Amplified Gender Voices program, a program that strengthens the ability of young women to push for progressive social policies within their communities.
The #ROSHOP (https://demos.mediaarchitecture.org/mab/project/53) initiative developed digitally shareable housing and construction methods and was recognized by the International Media Architecture Biennale as an exemplary, innovative project in the category of Responsive Urban Spaces.
#MMN_Ghana & The Gambia 2021
In August 2021 #MMN held its yearly diaspora workshop for members of the Ghanian and Gambian diaspora in Berlin. The event trained participants on issues of migration and social media use and equipped them to run workshops in their home countries, together with the regional #MMN coordinators.
In this way #MMN was able to reach hundreds of potential migrants in remote areas and share vital migration information with them.
#MMN has also been active creating podcasts and radio shows and has successfully launched an information service on migration issues using local USSD codes.
In 2021 #MMN also expanded its work from Ghana and is now active in The Gambia.
In 2021 the #defyhatenow Field Guide for Cameroon was updated and rewritten to make it more accessible and applicable to people in the field. The new field guide is available in French and English. Field Guides are educational resources similar to textbooks that teach easy-to-apply skills on how to counter online hate speech and incitement to violence. They also contain vital features, such as a trauma guide and information on mis-, dis-, and malinformation.
The Field Guide can be used by individuals looking for information and also builds the basis for the many trainings and workshops held by #dhn trainers.
Additionally, #defyhatenow has been working on creating an Early Warning Early Response system in Cameroon. One of the challenges in monitoring online social media activity is the need to both correctly interpret potential imminent acts of mass violence and summon a response in order to save lives. The MUNGO, the Early Warning Early Response (EWER) system being developed by our Nairobi-based #defyhatenow team, in conjunction with the Cameroon team, plots, reports and highlights violent incidents, patterns, and hotspots in
Cameroon’s conflict regions. With five #defyhatenow trained cohorts having completing the #AFFC - Africa Fact-Checking Fellowship Cameroon, expertise is being developed to support MUNGO.
#defyhatenow Field Guide Ethiopia
The #defyhatenow Field Guide Ethiopia is a set of tools created to support and address community-based peacebuilding efforts in Ethiopia. The Field Guide is available in both English and Amharic. It was created by the r0g_agency in collaboration with and under the commission of the GIZ—Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH within the framework of the project Cross-Border Collaboration Western Ethiopia-East Sudan. The Field Guide is intended as a resource to be used across all of Ethiopia.
With partners including Asosa Polytechnic TVET college, this Field Guide will strengthen training in media literacy and provide useful information and examples of ways to use social media to counter hate speech and online incitement to violence. The goal is to amplify the actions of positive influencers in Ethiopia and occupy the social media landscape with voices of peacebuilders rather than leaving that space open to be filled by people encouraging the conflict. This Field Guide provides tips and tools to foster compassion & tolerance online.
#defyhatenow Field Guide Cameroon, 2nd Edition
Whether online or offline, hate speech poses a threat to peace, democracy, and human rights. #defyhatenow is committed to countering the hate speech, conflict rhetoric, and incitement to violence spread on social media platforms and online in response to Cameroon’s Anglophone conflict. The #defyhatenow Field Guide Cameroon offers tools and strategies to be used by community-based organizations and individuals interested in peacebuilding.
This second edition incorporates lessons learned from implementing the project over a two-year period. It is more streamlined and accessible and places a focus on the inclusion of discussion questions and action steps. Each chapter covers a specific topic, including social media literacy, how to identify and report mis- and disinformation, #artivism, identity, trauma healing, and other tools that support peacebuilding efforts.
#MMN Smart Migration Guide Kit
The #MMN Smart Migration Guide offers information, discussion topics, and resources to be used by trainers and potential migrants to learn about the impact and consequences of migration. The guide is designed to support individuals in clarifying their goals and in making informed, safer migration decisions.
The #MMN Smart Migration Kit includes a #MMN Smart Migration Guide. The booklet is divided into 10 chapters, each focusing on a specific topic relevant to migration. Users and trainers can work through the guide from start to finish or jump directly to the chapter that is most relevant to the training. The kit also includes a large, two-sided poster. One side of the poster is designed as a quick reference guide and summarizes a few topics covered in the Smart Migration Guide.
In order to ensure the materials and information developed for the #MMN Smart Migration Guide have the greatest reach possible, #MMN also has developed an app that offers a condensed version of the guide and makes the materials readily available to anyone with an android smartphone. The app, once downloaded, works completely offline and thereby allows accurate information to be spread through communities that might otherwise not have easy access to the internet or trainings. The app can be downloaded through the Google Play store.
open source modular housing prototype
Pagirinya Refugee Settlement in northern Uganda, near the town of Adjumani, is home to YEF, the Youth Empowerment Foundation, a South Sudanese refugee organization. In 2021, YEF worked to design easy to build modular housing modules, using open source platforms and technology to develop and to share the knowledge, methods, and basic information needed to reproduce the modules by anyone, anywhere.
#defyhatenow spoken word
In 2021 #defyhatenow produced a series of spoken word videos in collaboration with Cameroonian Spoken Word artist Mac Alunge and Straw Academy.
Watch the videos here;
2021: the r0g_agency gets a new logo
When the r0g_agency was first founded in 2013, r0g’s graphic designer Heike created its original logo. Since then, r0g has grown and evolved and wanted to update the logo to better represent where we are now and what we continue to value: transparency, transformation, layers. Heike’s new design aims to capture that: it has an open, transparent, 3D shape to represent these qualities. Yet we also wanted to stay true to our roots – and so we kept the slash and the yellow color that has come to represent the r0g_agency.
Help us build strong, peaceful societies.
- Combat the spread of hate speech on the Internet,
- give migrants access to life-saving information,
- give young people the opportunity to develop their skills.
Together we can do our part to spread open knowledge and promote peace. Get involved! Donate today!