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On January 17th, 2019, HITN hosted the Digital Storytelling Facilitator’s Training Workshop at the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office, in collaboration with the Kings County District Attorney’s Office of Youth Diversion and Initiatives (KCDA), the Police Athletic League (PAL), and DIYdoc. This event marked the beginning of HITN’s 2019 Digital Storytelling Workshop, supplying the program’s participants with a newly published facilitator’s curriculum and guide, student workbook, pre-requisite materials, and further background knowledge needed for a successful session. “We’re excited that our partnership continues to promote this important set of issues related to media literacy and anti-cyberbullying,” says Ed Greene, HITN’s VP of Children, Youth, and Transmedia Literacy Initiatives.

The primary goal of HITN’s Digital Storytelling Workshop (formerly known as #BKAmplify) is to increase awareness and empathy around bullying and cyberbullying, through teamwork, collaboration, and the acquiring of storytelling skills, including both technical filmmaking and narrative techniques. By the end of our program, students will know how to use technology as a medium to promote social change. Acknowledging that cyberbullying is a constant reality for today’s teens, the Digital Storytelling Workshop aims to supply digital resources and potential solutions on how to combat the effects of cyberbullying within their own communities. With the help of KCDA, PAL, and DIYdoc, HITN has been able to craft an entire curriculum dependent on youth stories, outlooks, and voices, all of which can be documented and shared via social media platforms.

Along with HITN’s Learning staff- and KCDA’s personnel- our Facilitator’s Training Workshop participants included youth activity facilitators, center directors, and educational program staff from PAL’s afterschool initiatives. HITN was also pleased to have participants from Casita Maria, New Knowledge, and Fort Hamilton High School, all whom will hopefully be a part of the Digital Storytelling Workshop in the near future. Our workshop trainer and educational consultant, Typhani Harris, guided participants through the facilitator’s curriculum, familiarizing themselves with program topics and student activities, in order to effectively teach students participating in the 2019 Digital Storytelling Workshop.