So I am fortunate to be in Egypt over the next few weeks to learn more about civil society groups who are working with youth in the country. Over 60% of the population of the country is under 30 so it is a very important demographic. I will be helping groups identify issues and desig campaign strategies over the next 18 months. This week I ran across a very interesting group of young bloggers. They are a mix of Coptic Christians and Muslims who met online. They have worked on a number of issues together including women's rights, HIV aids, and the importance of religious tolerance. Their new joint project is called "The Bridge," and is designed to encourage young people to vote in the upcoming elections (the Presidential is in 2011 and is highly anticipated here.) Voter turnout in Egypt is very, very, low...and that is saying something coming from an American, as we don't fair very well next to other developed countries. Part of the reason its low is that the registration process is somewhat complicated. You actually have to go to the police station to pick up your registration card, which aside from being a hassle can be intimidating for some.
They did a short video/documentary on youtube that actually got the attention of a local television station who ran it for free....earned media at its best. It's what we all hope for when we invest in this type of tactic, that a video will go viral or create some sort of a splash in the main stream media. Here is their video below, even though parts are in Arabic, I don't think it needs translation.