“The ‘If Not Us Then Who?’ awareness campaign has become a US based charity, a 501(c) 3 with an indigenous led board. We have come on a long journey to get here from the creation of a few participatory films hosted in a UK production company, Handcrafted Films, to understanding what it means to create events, raise awareness and inspire a movement through creativity. Now it is time to put down roots.
“Setting up as a charity enables us to create the infrastructure to support and encourage a growing network of young communicators who can explain the demands of the wider indigenous movement. When a young communicator picks up a camera and points it at themselves, their elders, their culture, and their natural world, that is when we can start to understand their consciousness. The viewer sees what it means to still be connected to earth, to still see ourselves as nature. Pointing a camera requires that you pose questions and questions are the heart of understanding, the fuel for engagement and the path to connect with who we are. We hope that this connection can keep young indigenous leaders engaged in their history allowing viewers to understand another way of being.
“To increase this capacity we are growing our film commissions, generating more training workshops, revamping our website to reflect indigenous consciousness and actively reaching out to promote high quality films through new partnerships. Our new structure allows us to place the controls of our campaign, our call to action, ‘if not us then who?’ – in the hands of those that lead the fight to save our planet. If we are to work from a place of trust then we must trust others to tell their story. With this new change of structure we hope to gather allies in support of creating a self sustaining network of young communicators. We will also still continue to use our core communications skills to understand what it takes to save our planet and to get those solutions in the hands of decision makers.”
Our new board structure has Mina Setra as President, Candido Mezua as Vice President, Hugo Metz as Financial Officer, Bill Pullman, and Paul Redman as Executive Director and non-voting board member.
Our mission statement:
‘If Not Us Then Who’ is a US registered charity, 501(c)(3) that supports a global awareness campaign highlighting the role indigenous and local peoples play in protecting our planet. We work in partnership with communities to make films, take photographs, curate content, commission local artists and host events. Our work aims to build lasting networks, target unjust policies, and advocate for greater rights for indigenous and local peoples to bring about positive social change.
The specific objectives and purposes of this organisation are to:
- Combat climate crisis by providing support for the protection of the natural world through developing participatory communications materials with indigenous and rural communities;
- Provide communications support to local and indigenous communities so they can affect change at a local, national and international level.
- Build a network of local communities and indigenous peoples through events, by promoting participatory media content and by supporting community finance mechanisms.