Amizade presents: Anti-Racism and Black Identity around the World

by Daniel Alexander

If you’ve been following along with Amizade this year, you probably know by now that we’ve gone virtual: we’ve got our new virtual service-learning platform and programs. But being in the virtual world doesn’t always mean being on Zoom all day. We’ve been exploring other ways to connect students and other members of our network with what’s happening out in the world, and one of those ways is through video documentaries!

Let’s start at the beginning of the story. Our friends at Ohio University were looking for a creative way to engage with their students by sharing global perspectives on a couple of important current issues. They were impressed with the quality of Amizade’s past videos and our connections in different communities, so they approached us with a project idea.

Our first project? Highlighting the impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on communities around the world. If you haven’t already seen it, go check it out on the blog here.

For the second project in our Ohio University partnership, Amizade created a documentary highlighting Anti-racism initiatives around the world. Like COVID-19 this topic continues to be especially timely, as the US is once again faced with the consequences of it’s dark history of White supremacy, racism, and police brutality.

As with the COVID-19 documentary, our site directors and community partners played a huge role in this project. They shared their perspectives and they got personal about social movements that are extremely complex, often challenging to talk about, and different in almost every country.

This production would not have been possible without the work of a couple of other important collaborators, though. As we developed this documentary, Amizade was lucky to have input from Ronnell Perry, an Amizade board member and virtual education professional who specializes in experiences that educate and empower. His expertise shaped and strengthened the project in many ways. Then Frankie Harris, one of the creative minds behind Pittsburgh’s Ujamaa Collective, brought the script to life with her compelling voiceover.

Once again the entire production came together remotely. Interviewees filmed in their own interviews, and US-based Amizade staff members edited drafts from home. The result is a powerful introduction to Anti-racism initiatives in the US and around the world and a celebration of a few of the many facets of Black cultures.

After successfully debuting this documentary in classes at Ohio University during the fall semester, we’re now incredibly proud to present this new type of collaboration to our broader network. You can watch Anti-Racism and Black Identity around the World here:



This was the first collaboration of its kind in the history of the organization, but definitely not the last! Amizade is open to more — what topic would you want us to tackle next? If you’ve got an idea in mind, reach out and we can start planning.