Civic Lenses is a project for transparent and accountable political processes
through support and popularization of citizen journalism, awareness-raising,
civic education and activism of citizens towards human rights, freedom of
expression, democracy, and free elections. This is a project that provides training
and opportunities for citizens to participate, observe and report on events that are
important to them, their local communities and processes at local and national level. This project has grown into an important tool for citizens to remind authorities
and officials of their obligation to be transparent and accountable.
Two very successful years of implementation of the Civic Lenses project are behind
CIVIL. Hundreds of active citizens from various walks of life and all communities
in the country (over 500 of them so far), have been trained in citizen journalism,
human rights, media literacy, monitoring and reporting skills. We have incorporated methodologies and approaches tested within the Civic Lenses Project in other
projects of CIVIL, as well.
Citizen journalists around the world have enormous power. Thanks to the accessible technology and the Internet, they have the opportunity to expose violations and
abuses by power holders, and contribute to the strengthening of freedom of expression. If some time ago we had to wait for corrupt media and editors to publish
alarming stories on violation of human rights, usually without any success, now we
can do this ourselves, with the help of our smart phones and social networks. These
days, citizen journalists are recording short video stories with visibility that easily
exceed the circulation of newspapers or the audience of popular TV stations.