New Internationalist

Action And Worth Reading On… Racism

Issue 145

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IDEAS FOR ACTION

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Nganampa Health Council Inc.
PO Box 2232
Alice Springs
NT 5750
Australia
Tel: (089) 52 5300

AIMS

To establish and operate an Aboriginal community-based health service, controlled and operated by the communities it serves. To provide primary and preventative health care. To train health workers to understand and practise health care that is relevant to the needs of the communities. To support the communities in overcoming health problems and to provide community health education. Generally to promote good health and well-being.

METHODS

Nganampa has divided itself into four Community Health Units, each responsible to a Community Health Committee. Training Anangu to carry out health-care-related duties and to assume the associated responsibilities is an integral part of Nganampa’s primary! preventative health-care programme. A health education programme is running continuously.

SUCCESSES

Nganampa runs its own Air Health Service which transports patients and personnel between the Community Health Units and the regional state hospital. Anangu, through their Community Health Committees, are deciding whether a particular programme is appropriate and is likely to be effective. Quality medical/health personnel are now directly available to Anangu within their own environment

FAILURES

Nganampa has only been operating since December 1983 and it is difficult to detail failures. However, there are two difficulties facing us: the inability many employees have working with one another in astrange environment and the high level of dependency on government grant funding.

FUTURE PLANS

To further develop a programme for combatting petrol sniffing now endemic amongst Anangu youth. To reduce the level of trachoma and other eye diseases. To implement and develop a dental-health-care programme. And to further develop anti-natal and obstetric care.

HELP NEEDED

In detailing some of the facts which show that a chronic ill health environment exists here in Central Australia.

In reducing the dependency Anangu have been forced into when accepting government grants in aid funding.

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AVEHI
(Audio Visual Education Resource Centre)

c/o Indian Education Society
Napoo Road, Hindu Colony
Dadar, Bombay 400 014
India

AIMS

To promote the use of audiovisual media in order to raise the educational level and social awareness of Indian people. To put to full use the materials produced and to make them available to all sections of the community. To bridge the gap which exists between the producers and potential users of audiovisual materials.

METHODS

AVEHI, which means ‘know thou’, has set up an audiovisual education resource centre which pools materials of all kinds. The materials are translated into local languages and modified to suit Indian audiences. A lending library is open to both members and non-members Our service includes lending materials, use of our equipment and services of our projectionists

SUCCESSES

Since the society was founded in 1981 more than 100 sources of audio visual materials have been contacted. The library stock at present includes films, slide shows, flashcards and flannelograms, exhibitions, charts, teaching aids and educational games. Bookings for screenings are steadily rising; at present about 50 per month.

FAILURES

The enormous task of acquiring materials, modifying, translating, recording and cataloging, acquiring equipment and raising funds has not permitted sufficient time for us to build up our user membership systematically. We have not had time to organise workshops and training programmes. The feed back of screenings has not been satisfactory.

FUTURE PLANS

To enlarge our library stock and to produce our own cheap indigenous aids. To organise workshops and training programmes. To build up local units in Bombay and to acquire equipment which we still do not have.

HELP WANTED

We want audiovisual material of all kinds, on all subjects, which would be useful for Indian audiences. We want programmes which would inform our people about other countries and their peoples and cultures. We want to exchange ideas and information on how to make cheap audiovisual aids and equipment.

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The Japan Peace Museum
Shiba 1-4-9, Minato-ku
Tokyo 105, Japan
Tel: 03 454 9875
Telex: J33609-JAPAN

AIMS

To make our audiovisual materials on Hiroshima, Nagasaki, war and peace available to the public.

To build a museum equipped with the facilities for the above plus those for the preservation of archive materials.

To make international links with individuals and groups working for peace.

To develop new films, artwork etc. relating to peace.

METHODS

We have initiated the Peace Tile Campaign in order to raise funds for building the museum. Each contribution represents a tile and the completed museum will be a mosaic of individuals and groups involved in work for peace. Contributors also get a small plastic ‘peace tile’ as thanks for their help.

Through sales of films, books, T-shirts, ‘peace tiles’, calendars etc. made by the Japan Peace Museum. By co-operating with other groups in their activities for peace.

SUCCESSES

The Japan Peace Museum is a continuation of other movements whose successes include the publication of the book ‘HiroshimaNagasaki: A Pictorial Record of the Atomic Destruction’ and ‘Prophecy’. The Peace Tile Campaign is not yet a year old but we already have two small galleries in Tokyo at which we conduct exhibitions, and we have so far produced two new films.

FAILURES

We have not ended the arms race or created world peace; nor have we yet raised enough money to build the museum.

FUTURE PLANS

To continue with our fund-raising efforts, to cooperate with other groups both locally and abroad and to work on the production of new ifims and work relating to peace.

HELP NEEDED

We need individuals and organisations to join us in the Peace Tile Campaign and would welcome information on the work of other peace groups.

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[image, unknown] This page of New Internationalist is written by the groups featured on it. The space is available free and a guide for writing entries can be obtained from New Internationalist, 42 Hythe Bridge Street, Oxford, OX1 2EP.

Worth Reading on... RACISM

An enormous amount is written about racism but two recent books stand out - in terms both of insight and of readability.

The first comes in two volumes, which makes it sound very weighty and daunting. It’s not. Roots of Racism and Patterns of Racism by the Institute of Race Relations 1982, are beautifully designed, placing as much emphasis on photographs and illustrations as on the text - though the writing, too, is clear and lively. They are aimed at young people of 14 and over but have a lot to offer anyone. Part one takes the story up to slavery and the beginning of racism, while part two shows the effect racism has had on all our continents as well as on our attitude to the developing world. Roots costs £1.50 and Patterns £2.00 and they are available from the Institute of Race Relations, 247 Pentonville Road, London Ni 9NG UK. Postage is 50p for both volumes within the UK and £1.00 for overseas orders. For 10 or more copies there is 10% discount.

The second key book is Staying Power - the History of Black People in Britain by Peter Fryer, Pluto Press 1984. The material Fryer has unearthed about the black presence in Britain over the centuries, as well as white people’s response to it, is so ‘fascinating that it brings home just how partial (in both senses) are our orthodox history books. Readers in Australasia and North America should not be altogether put off by the title, since the British attitudes covered here determined the way those continents were settled and ruled. Besides, the chapter on the rise of racism as an ideology is the clearest explanation I have read.

Both these are histories. For works on current issues try Policing the Crisis by Stuart Hall et al, Macmillan 1978 or A Different Hunger by A. Sivanandan, Pluto Press 1982.

The novels and essays of black American writers such as Alice Walker, June Jordan, Maya Angelou and Paule Marshall also provide great insight into what it is to be black in a racist society. All of these should be readily available in paperback because of the burgeoning interest in women’s writing except June Jordan, whose work is difficult to get hold of outside North America. Her book of essays Civil Wars is published byBeacon in the USA.

And as good a place as any to start investigating the work of C.L.R. James is with the essays in At the Rendezvous of Victory, Allison andBusby 1984, though the quotation in this issue’s editorial comes from The Black Jacoblns (1938).


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