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Introducing David Hernández Palmar to the team

We are delighted to welcome David Hernández Palmar to the team. He brings with him a wealth of experience and connections. From storyteller of the Wayuu people, to continent-wide film festival organiser, David will be crucial in delivering our mentoring programme in the next few years. 

Find out more about David and what he’ll be doing at If Not Us Then Who:

Tell us a bit about yourself?

I am a storyteller of the Wayuu people, fascinated by the diversity of the peoples and the narrative capacity that we have as a legacy to tell our stories to the world. On the other hand, in my role as political and advocacy advisor to the Latin American Film and Communication Coordinator for Indigenous Peoples, we have been doing that job. 

As for the capacity I have as an individual, starting 2021, I will be mentoring  a If Not Us Then Who? project called ‘Youth Filmmakers Professional Development Program’ with the objective of having a new range of formal mentorship and capacity building programs with indigenous and local community youth to broaden access to filmmaking in tropical forest communities. 

Now in global or international terms, my work will aim to establish a relationship based on reciprocity between global north and global south, and this does not have to do with a geographical issue, it has to do with the conversations that have to take place on equal terms, so we can really talk about global movement and diversity among indigenous peoples. My priorities are to strengthen the territorial indigenous narratives and their ecosystems, especially the indigenous peoples of Asia, Africa and Latin America, so that we can give an example of how to determine ourselves as peoples through cinematography.

What makes you excited to join If Not Us Then Who?

Joining  If Not Us Then Who? makes me really happy, because I can hold ongoing frank and enriching conversations in and about communication platforms and networks regarding the contribution of the indigenous narrative with respect to the protection of lands and their positions on extractivism. 

Who are your inspirations? 

Andrea Ixchiu Hernandez | Maya K’iche activist | Guatemala

Jonathan Luna | Tama Ashkenazi mestize | Community organizer, land defender, and cultural promoter | Colombia

What will you be working on in the new year (give us a preview of the mentee programme)?

The Youth Filmmakers Professional Development Program, is an If Not Us Then Who? Mentorship program that features and supports Indigenous storytellers from tropical forest communities who are working with grassroots organisations in their territories. Over the course of the year, each participant will develop a set of professional development goals that we will help to support with training, peer to peer learning and masterclasses. It is expected that each participant will meet deadlines and participate in group or one-on-one calls and remote sessions.

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