Introducing Rebekah Sosa and her Grassroots Technology Intiative!

January 22, 2010 at 5:54 am 4 comments

I am so excited to introduce Rebekah Sosa to the Trivani team!  Rebekah’s journey of exploration and crossing cultures began as a young girl in Bluff, Utah where she participated in song and dance competitions with her Navajo classmates.  After high school, Rebekah moved north to Salt Lake City where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish.  It was through this language program that she found herself living in Spain for two years exploring the language, the land and the culture.  From Spain, Rebekah moved to Scotland and earned a Master of Science degree in European Studies and Translation Studies, which led to a critical internship with the State Department and United Nations in New York City. 

For Rebekah, the choice to take this internship signified the birth of a new awareness and a turning point in her life.  She came to realize that there was a large disparity between the top-down approach to the development work of the larger organizations and that of the grassroots movements that she had researched.  In her view, the top-down approach, wherein development ideas are funneled down from headquarters, didn’t seem to have enough input from the communities that would ultimately be affected by the top-down decisions.  Rebekah notes that billions of dollars have been spent on development efforts over the years and yet poverty is still on the rise in much of the developing world.

Following this internship, Rebekah had the opportunity to be involved with grassroots development work in Mexico and Guatemala.  She tapped into her passion for photography, documenting the work she was involved with in both countries and sharing this skill set with the people in the community.  In Mexico, she worked with children – teaching them how to take photographs by introducing them to such things as framing an image, choosing interesting angles for their shots and working with varied lighting.  On two CHOICE Humanitarian expeditions to Guatemala, she used her skills with photography and video to document the work taking place in the villages.

Rebekah’s photography has become central to her life and as it has evolved, she has discovered ways in which to use this skill set to raise awareness, inspire action and tell stories that matter in our global village.  Her niche in photography is capturing people in their natural environment – in the everyday moments.  She is fascinated by finding the contrasts between those moments across cultures and creating ways to share those contrasts with the world.  In terms of raising awareness, she believes that she can discover innovative ways to use her photography to tell stories – but she acknowledges that telling a story with an image and hoping to inspire action in people is a great challenge.  She wants to push people out of their comfort zone and promote engagement through her work.  She refines her method for enhancing this engagement by thinking critically about what it is that really gets people’s attention and moves them to act.

This notion of mobilization or engagement motivated by photography inspired Rebekah to create a technology initiative through the CHOICE Humanitarian and Trivani partnership.  Rebekah believes that technology training in each of the partnering villages will promote the self-reliance that Trivani sees as critical to successful development in our partner countries.  Rebekah’s aim is to leave the community members with a technological skill set so that they can create powerful media – through which to tell their story.

(In our next entry, I’ll tell you about Rebekah’s technology training with the CHOICE and Trivani team in Kenya!)


Entry filed under: The United States, Trivani HQ. Tags: , , .

Update from Uganda: “African Child survives by Nature” Grassroots Technology Initiative Thrives in Kenya

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Megan  |  January 22, 2010 at 8:59 pm

    I love this Rai and Beca. Excited for the follow-up post about Beca’s work in Nepal!

    • 2. Rebekah  |  January 22, 2010 at 10:59 pm

      Thank you Megan! I’m excited to be part of the Trivani team!

  • 3. Elisa  |  February 5, 2010 at 9:25 pm

    Rebekah is from Bluff, Utah? Then she must know about Bluff Fort and the Hole in the Rock Foundation. I do some writing and research work for them.

    Great to have you on board Rebekah. I learned to type on a machine similar to that one.

    • 4. Rai Farrelly  |  February 9, 2010 at 1:54 am

      Hi Elisa,

      Rebekah knows Bluff well, so I bet she does know these spots. She’s in Nepal right now working with our Trivani and CHOICE Humanitarian teams to continue developing her technology initiative … news to come soon about that!


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Trivani Field Notes is your connection to the people on the ground engaged in the humanitarian work supported by Trivani Foundation.
Each week, new updates and stories from the field will be posted to share the accomplishments, needs, and gratitude from those who can best report the difference Trivani Foundation is making in the fight against poverty.

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