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International Elevate Award 2015 Finalists
The following finalists are subject to the vote of the international Elevate Awards jury, which is ongoing. In the end of September we will know who is the winner.
Bits of Freedom
Bits of Freedom is the Dutch digital rights organization, focusing on privacy and communications freedom in the digital age. Bits of Freedom strives to influence legislation and self-regulation, on a national and a European level. Bits of Freedom is one of the founders and a member of European Digital Rights (EDRi).
Fair.coop is an open global cooperative, self-organized via the Internet, created at september 2014 and supported by a diverse umbrella of networks, organizations and cooperatives. FairCoop's aims at a transition to a new world by reducing the economic and social inequalities among people as much as possible. At the same time FairCoop gradually contributes to a new global wealth, accessible to all humankind as commons. To achieve that goal, FairCoop is building a new economic system based on cooperation, collaboration, solidarity and fairness. Fair.coop understands the implementation of a fairer monetary system as a key element of such a transition. Therefore, Faircoin was proposed as the first global solidarity cryptocurrency upon which to base its actions.
The Grandhotel Cosmopolis is no ordinary hotel and it does not try to be. It is a place that combines refugee accommodations, artist's studios and open work spaces as well as a hotel offering culinary and cultural attractions.
For refugees – our hotel guests with asylum – there are 9 double bedrooms and one common room available on three floors – Mostly families are living here but also individual women, men, and children. Everyone is welcome to participate in the project and many of them do already.
Our hotel guests – hotel guests without asylum – can be easily compared to travellers staying at hostels in big cities. Apart from 12 by artists individually designed double bedrooms with washing facilities there are more 4-bedrooms on the ground floor. The Grandhotel welcomes travellers from around the world, artists, and new arrivals to Augsburg
International Council of 13 Indiginous Grandmothers
The International Council of Thirteen Indigenous Grandmothers represent a global alliance of prayer, education and healing for our Mother Earth, all Her inhabitants, all the children, and for the next seven generations to come. They are deeply concerned with the unprecedented destruction of our Mother Earth and the destruction of indigenous ways of life. They believe the teachings of our ancestors will light our way through an uncertain future. They look to further their vision through the realization of projects that protect our diverse cultures: lands, medicines, language and ceremonial ways of prayer and through projects that educate and nurture our children.
Me and My Shadow
Me and My Shadow by the Tactical Technology Collective helps you explore the digital shadows you cast, and provides you with means to change their size and shape. Learn how you, your friends and family can stay safe and sound in the digital world.
No Border Academy
Without a valid Residence Permit, refugees are not allowed to work or study in Germany, and the asylum procedures are extensive. This means that important skills, abilities, and knowledge are being wasted. The No Border Academy aims to solve this problem by giving refugees the opportunity to develop, increase, improve, and share their abilities with one another, and with the wider community. The No Border Academy is a knowledge-sharing platform where every participant has the ability to contribute in his or her own way. They promote intercultural exchange and aim to ensure that every individual has the access to free education. Our concept is that refugee participants choose and develop lectures and projects that meet their needs and interests, while students and community members provide support.
Located in Kivu in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, Panzi Hospital is best known for its support of sexual violence survivors and women suffering from complex gynecological conditions. Rape has become an established tool of war in the conflict-ridden region. Every year, thousands of women and girls who suffer sexual violence in the Congo seek treatment at the hospital. Dr. Denis Mukwege, chief surgeon and founder of Panzi Hospital, has become a global authority in the treatment of serious gynecological injuries and a tireless advocate for Congolese women affected by war and medical neglect.
Silent Walk, organized by Vivian Caccuri
The Silent Walk, a project organized since 2012 by Brazilian multimedia artist Vivian Caccuri, gathers 20 people in the city for an 8-hour walk under a vow of silence. Deep in-loco listening, the work's main goal, happens in areas with odd acoustic features. The path is previously designed and includes many sites where the permission for the visit had to be negotiated or carefully planned. In those special sites, the group is able to rest, contemplate and even sleep. The walks are finished with a talk-permitted dinner where the participants hear their voices for the first time. Silent Walk was already part of Sound Development City 2014’s expedition in Riga and Helsinki, of CAPACETE and PIVÔ art residencies and was performed more than twenty times in cities such as Rio de Janeiro, Niterói, São Paulo (all of them in Brazil) and Valparaíso (Chile).
Speakerinnen.org was created by 8 women with the support of 4 coaches as part of "Rails Girls Berlin" learning project.
The idea of having a database of women* speakers originated during numerous discussions both online and offline about the dominance of men in the public domain. There are lots of reasons for this and speakerinnen.org isn't a solution for all of them. But it is a step towards making it easier for organisers to achieve a balanced male to female ratio at their events. In addition they want to support women* in finding the right platform. They hope they will be encouraged by the experiences of other women* and see that they too have a contribution to make.
Uncompromisingly great video that is totally unique! A wonderful anarchist voice that consistently bucks the status quo.
The Amazon Mycorenewal Project
The Alliance for Bioremediation and Sustainability in Sucumbíos (ABSS), is a collaboration of the US non-profit organization Amazon Mycorenewal Project (AMP) and the Ecuadorian higher education institute El Instituto Superior Tecnologico “Crecermas”(ISTEC) that aims to use sustainable mushroom cultivation as a means to remediate industrial contamination, create economic opportunities among affected communities, and empower people to lead healthier lives in a culturally sensitive and appropriate way.
The P2P Foundation Wiki
The P2P Foundation Wiki at p2pfoundation.net is the heart of an ecosystem of curation which documents as almost no other source in the world, a very complete record of the transition towards the commons and this in every domain of social activity. Though the wiki may not look 'sexy' to most, it has attracted 28 million page views, with a steady growth of 30 percent per year without any paid advertising, just word of mouth. The wiki is connected to a blog, and an ecology of social media, such as twitter feeds with a potential reach of seven million. It is also connected to political initiatives like the companion blog commonstransition.org, which documents political and policy transitions; it has an art section that has partly been composed by friends and partners like Furtherfield and Art is Open Source; and makes special inclusionary efforts such as the project, 100 Women That Construct the P2P Society, publishing interviews with female p2p and commons pioneers every other week.
the Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy, Sydney, Australia
The Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy is a protest camp run by Aboriginal Australians in the inner-Sydney suburb of Redfern. Its aim is to keep an area of land known as 'The Block' in Aboriginal hands, and to ensure the land is used solely for low-cost housing for Aboriginal people. It was started by Aboriginal elder, Jenny Munro, and was named after the original Aboriginal Tent Embassy in Canberra, Australia. Aboriginal elder Jenny Munro says The Block is sacred, sovereign Aboriginal land. But on 26 May 2014, the CEO of the Aboriginal Housing Company, Michael Mundine, declared that The Block is in fact private land, not Aboriginal land. However, he has recently threatened to have protestors and the tent embassy removed from the site.
The White Helmets
The White Helmets, also known as the Syrian Civil Defense, are a group of unarmed and impartial firefighters, medics, and search and rescue workers who volunteer to rush to bombing sites and rescue people from under the rubble. They save people on all sides of the ongoing conflict, pledging commitment to the principles of humanity, solidarity, and impartiality. To date, the White Helmets have saved more than 17,796 lives. The White Helmets have also created a petition demanding that the United Nations Security Council stop barrel bombs, which are often rusty old barrels packed with explosives and shrapnel, by introducing a no-fly zone.
Tony Rinaudo: The Tree Whisperer
Tony spent 18 years in Niger managing a long-term agricultural development program. The natural-regeneration reforestation methods he has developed have contributed to over five million hectares of land being re-vegetated in Niger. Tony was also instrumental in introducing edible seeded Australian acacias into Nigerien farming systems and for their promotion as a human food. In 1999, Tony joined World Vision Australia and was able to spread awareness and design wider ‘re- greening’ projects. Today he is based in Melbourne and his specialist areas are de-/reforestation, desertification, food security, sustainable farming and food production. Tony’s current focus is promoting reforestation internationally and facilitating ongoing research and development of edible seeded Australian acacias.
Zen Priest Hans Vanja Palmers, Dharma Heir of Kobun Chino Otogawa Roshi (1938-2002) of the Japanese Soto school, is an animal rights activist for over 30 years. Amongst other initiatives, Vanja Palmers is the co-founder of the animal rights and meditation center Felsentor ('Rock Gate'). Felsentor is a small Zen-Buddhist inspired community which finds guidance in the meditative and contemplative traditions of all religions. In addition to organizing workshops and seminars, the community is in the process of establishing a center for animal rights with an animal sanctuary. During the summer months the community runs a small vegetarian restaurant.
Watch the Med Alarm Phone
Watch The Med is an online mapping platform to monitor the deaths and violations of migrants’ rights at the maritime borders of the EU. The WatchTheMed project was initiated as part of the 2012 Boats4People campaign in the Central Mediterranean. Today the project further involves a wide network of organisations, activists and researchers.
The documentation generated by WatchTheMed seeks to support the work of organisations that defend migrants’ rights, inform migrants of their rights and security at sea, pressure authorities into respecting their obligations at sea, support the ongoing campaigns by the relatives of the dead and disappeared at sea, and support legal proceedings against those who violated the rights of migrants.
Water wheel is a global, creative practice based initiative exploring water as a vital resource for social and cultural well being at a personal and public level across the planet. Waterwheel is an interactive, collaborative platform for sharing media, knowledge, ideas, performances and presentations about or inspired by water. It is free to use towards awareness, celebration, care & accessibility of water everywhere.
Women's Protection Units (Kurdish: Yekîneyên Parastina Jinê / YPJ)
The Women's Protection Units (Kurdish: Yekîneyên Parastina Jinê), commonly known as the YPJ, are an armed group which was set up in 2012 as "the female brigade of the leftist YPG militia". The YPG/YPJ are "the armed wing of a Kurdish coalition that has taken de facto control over a sizable chunk of Syria's predominantly Kurdish north" (called Rojava).
The "all-female militia group grew out of the Kurdish resistance movement", and it "currently has over 7,000 (or 10,000, according to TeleSUR) volunteer fighters between the ages of 18–40". They receive "no funding from the international community and the women are reliant on the Kurdish community for supplies and food". The YPJ has joined its brother organization, the YPG, in fighting against any group that has the intention of bringing the Syrian Civil War to Kurdish inhabited areas. It has come under increased attacks from ISIS militants in Syria and is "currently involved in the fight for the key border town of Kobanî in Syria".
The group "played a critical role in rescuing the thousands of Yazidis trapped on Mount Sinjar by IS fighters" in August 2014. One fighter emphasized: "we need to control the area ourselves without depending on [the government]... They can't protect us from [ISIS], we have to protect ourselves [and] we defend everyone...no matter what race or religion they are".
A 15-year-old indigenous change agent, environmental activist, public speaker, eco hip-hop artist, and the Youth Director of Earth Guardians– Xiuhtezcatl is a powerful voice on the front lines of the youth-led climate movement. He performs internationally at music festivals, organizes demonstrations, and has spoken at over 100 high-impact rallies, events and conferences around the globe. He and his brother, Itzcuauhtli, regularly give school presentations to ignite and inspire youth to step up as leaders and take action on behalf of the planet. In 2013, Xiuhtezcatl received the 2013 United States Community Service Award from President Obama, and was the youngest of 24 national change-makers chosen to serve on the President's youth council.
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