Finding different ways to engage
So – lets set the context….The SAFE Foundation are an International Development Charity based in Cardiff and we work all across the globe in very small communities that struggle to access mainstream support because they are geographically or socially remote. Through a fantastic network of partner organisations, we assist sustainable projects that can eventually be delivered locally. We help to fill in the gaps in provision with education, health, financial or social support – it really depends on the community.
We have lots of ways that we get people involved. We are always looking for interesting ways to spread the word (we know how to Tweet and everything….) And, as we happen to be a young(ish) group of people, we often find ourselves getting involved in the social scene in Wales and beyond to do this. We have parties, we go to festivals, we do activities like sky dives and we make sure people have a good time. It’s a simple formula: People dance, revel, kick back whilst learning about global citizenship; we make money and SAFE friends. People in need benefit. Done.
We also have a research arm where we look at issues like immigration, responsible media reporting and social justice. We use this to engender positive change, especially in areas of deprivation in this country so that young people can influence future generations. And we have a couple of Fair Trade links with our communities as well as a volunteering arm that allows people to come to work in our projects in a way that is sensitive, relevant and avoids the ‘voluntourism’ trap.
It was during a volunteer trip that we got to know Dan Green, photographer extraordinaire, general legend and eternal friend of SAFE. He came to our project in Ghana, got the bug, came with us to Cambodia and now is coming to our India projects in August. Not only does he get stuck in with the work, but he puts his photography skills to good use and produces stunning images of what we do and how we do it.
One of our trustees, Mark – came up with the idea of projection bombing around Cardiff to raise awareness of SAFE using some of Dan’s images and so the wheels were set in motion.
Our delightful friend and mentor, Ian Featherstone was a champ, getting hold of a super industrial mega projector (that looks a little bit like a transformer) and together with the kind assistance of The Owain Glyndwr and St. John’s church in Cardiff we picked a night and went to town (literally and metaphorically).
Things that were rubbish: The Weather….Hello!!?? Can someone please tell the rain it’s July and it’s not meant to be here and Town was unusually quiet.
Things that were great: The images looked amazing: It’s a great way of reaching out to people walking past: We got to play with our cool projector: It worked! Even though not many people were out, we know you lot who walked past checked out the website because the clever people inside our computer box told us you did! Thank you.
The next step is to find a balmy, lazy summer evening where people can order a jug of sangria and sit out on the street and watch the world go by and then BOOM….hit them with SAFE love and do it all over again. This will be happening in August- so come on Mr. Sun….do us and thousands of people in the developing world a favour and come and see? Pretty Please?
Hannah Fitt is Director of the Safe Foundation
Find out more about us here – www.thesafefoundation.co.uk
Find out more about Dan here – www.dangreenphotography.com
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