Empowering Women through… Videography?

There is good reason why past Kiva Fellows at BRAC Uganda have been impressed with BRAC’s Empowerment and Livelihood for Adolescents (ELA) program.

I am not going to rehash what has been already been thoroughly covered – instead, I want to highlight a small group within the ELA program that is doing amazing work.

Visiting the “PV girls” of BRAC Uganda’s ELA program!


Meet the PV women of BRAC Uganda’s ELA program.  To backtrack a bit, ELA is one of BRAC’s signature programs that is geared toward young women.  ELA has incredible reach within Uganda – there are currently over 40,000 ELA members throughout the country.  ELA participants are provided a network where they are provided life skills training and a forum for socializing and playing games.  Older ELA members are able to take training geared toward a specific income-generating activity and then receive microfinance loans for their enterprise.  A pilot program that was a collaboration between BRAC and InsightShare taught a small group of ELA women how to produce and edit participatory videos.

Participatory Video (PV) is a video technique that asks for real feedback from community members.  As part of InsightShare’s mission, PV should “build a bridge between communities and decision-makers”, leaving participants feeling empowered with greater self-confidence about their capacity to influence change.  This style of video production can be used for a number of purposes, from giving communities a meaningful forum to discuss issues to collecting data for research.  In fact, the PV women’s first project was to collect interviews for a research initiative by BRAC’s Monitoring and Evaluation unit.

I had the chance to meet with this vibrant and energetic young group of women and was excited with their future potential.  Not only did the PV women enjoy learning a skill that they could rely on as a primary source of income, but it made them feel empowered that they can help their communities.

In an interesting turn of perspective, here is one of the PV women’s videos they produced about the BRAC “Girls Club” and its impact.

BRAC Girls Club from InsightShare on Vimeo.

Check out more of their videos here.

Coincidentally, ELA loans will soon be found under Kiva’s “Youth” theme due to the high-impact activities of ELA.   Make a loan to ELA women today!

Julie Kriegshaber is a Kiva Fellow with BRAC Uganda in Kampala.  Aside from practicing her Lugandan, she has been enjoying learning more about all of BRAC Uganda’s high impact development programs.  Impressed with BRAC Uganda’s work as well? Join the Friends of BRAC Uganda lending team!

About the author