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April Smith of AHA MEDIA is very honored to be a Keynote Speaker at Northern Voice conference 11 at UBC

May 13, 2011 Leave a comment

April Smith and AHA MEDIA will be presenting  a Keynote Speech at Northern Voice Conference on Friday May 13, 2011

April Smith, Hendrik Beune and Peter Davies make the letters AHA with their fingers while at  Woodwards Housing in Vancouver Downtown Eastside (DTES)

April is a citizen journalist and co-founder of AHA MEDIA.

“I’m a citizen journalist and co-founder of AHA MEDIA. I have also been involved with W2’s Fearless City Mobile Project – which has presented here at Northern Voice in previous years – and I facilitate social media literacy classes at LifeSkills Centre and Oppenheimer Park.  In my teaching work, I encourage and promote peer training to support education in technology.

I believe, if my neighbors in the Downtown Eastside are able to access communication and technology – as people do in other neighborhoods – I feel it will help create positive change. I know this because it’s helped me create a better life for myself.

I work with W2, which is active in this area of breaking the digital divide and believes access to technology and communication is a human right. For those who have been following, W2 is finally opening a 10,000 square foot community media centre at the Woodward’s Atrium. From this fabulous new space, W2 will help people with their digital storytelling, with a crossmedia lab that broadcasts on CJSF and Coop Radieo, and Novus and Shaw Cable, and the internet.

Programs like Fearless City Mobile and this new media centre put technology in the hands of people and will help more people overcome marginalization by connecting people with society and supporting their self-representation. I know this work is important for transforming people’s lives because it’s where I began. This is my story.

I am cheerleader for positive community building and outreach. Through art, music, and community promotion, I am a self-taught advocate for social justice and positive neighborhood unity. This is really important given that the voices of our marginalized groups are usually mediated by others, rarely do we represent ourselves. Out of W2’s Fearless project was born our social enterprise ” AHA MEDIA.”

AHA MEDIA is a small business that supports social justice by creating spaces for people to represent themselves.

My interests are documentation of daily life in the Downtown Eastside, highlighting the positive, while bringing to light the injustices that occur in the neighborhood.

I have filmed observations, both subversive and situational, over the last 3 years.

Using social media, new media, mobile technology, photos, videos and blogs,  I concentrate on sharing the stories and voices of the otherwise-silenced inner city community. Through our website AHAMedia.ca we reach our neighbors, reach Vancouverites from other neighborhoods, plus a global audience

April Smith, Hendrik Beune and Richard Czaban make the letters AHA with their fingers while at Woodwards Housing in Vancouver Downtown Eastside (DTES)

I hope to inspire everyone at Northern Voice!


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