Alana Tornello, 2012, Comparative Literature

My internship was sponsored by the Environmental Learning Research Centre at Rhodes University, where I worked with PEI intern Lilia Xie to create multimedia vignettes for two rural villages in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. These short videos and photo montages shared the stories of local artists and community leaders who have ­initiated programs to celebrate their unique local environments through art, ­conservation, and other realms of development. In the village of Hamburg, we created a series of ­videos narrated by the local artists in the Keiskamma Art Project. The artists explained how their works conserve their landscape and healthy living traditions. In the village of Cata, we made videos featuring village locals who described their conservation work to other members of the village, which created a unique type of environmental ­education. I was also able to illustrate a fun poster that has directions for the use of a compost toilet that was recently constructed in the village. I was inspired by the strong ­leaders that we met in local communities, clinics, academia, NGOs, and even in ­personal households. I was able to assist in their visions for a better community through my ­ethnographic work, video editing, illustrations, and simple desire to listen and share their passions with a wider community.