Global Issues Through Local Eyes
We are Correspondents of the World, an online platform where people from all over the world share their personal stories in relation to global development. We try to collect stories from people of all ages and genders, people with different social and religious backgrounds and people with all kinds of political opinions in order to get a fuller picture of what is going on behind the big news.
At Correspondents of the World we invite everyone to share their own story. This means we don't have professional writers or skilled interviewers. We believe that this approach offers a whole new perspective on topics we normally only read about in the news - if at all.
We acknowledge that the stories we collect will necessarily be biased. But so is news. Believing in the power of the narrative, our growing team of awesome editors helps correspondents to make sure that their story is strictly about their personal experience - and let that speak for itself.
With Correspondents of the World we do not just want to collect stories - we want to connect people. We believe that sharing personal experiences helps to better understand one another. We encourage interaction between writers and readers, and champion dialogue at eye level especially on topics that tend to turn toxic elsewhere on the web.
Although we just started a few months ago, we already have a great community of people from all over the world. While face-to-face meetings are difficult at the moment, our Facebook Community Group is THE place to be to meet other people invested in Correspondents of the World. We are currently running a series of online-tea talks to get to know each other better.
Speaking different languages can be a major factor in hindering good communication - or preventing interaction at all. We have a growing team of translators to allow correspondents to write in their own language, and then translate their stories into English. We also try to translate stories into as many different languages as possible to make them assessible to other language communities, too.
All Value And No Profit
Correspondents of the World is about people, not about money. And we mean that. So far, our core team are carrying the little expenses associated with running a website, and all our editors, translators, managers and correspondents are adding an immense value to the project every day without monetary compensation.
We are registered as a non-profit in the Netherlands as Stichting Correspondents of the World (KvK Number 82491534, RSIN Number 862491356) and currently are in the process of being registered as a charity (Dutch: ANBI status).
You can download our official statutes here (Dutch: Statuten), and a summary of our policies here (Dutch: Hoofdlijnen Beleidsplan). For an English version, please check our Vision & Mission statements. If you have questions about Stichting Correspondents of the World, please feel free to contact Joost (chairman).
For now we run Correspondents of the World with the little pocket money needed to host a website, so we can give you free access to the stories we collect. And we plan to keep this free access to all our stories without annoying ad banners in the future too - so we'll have to figure out how to do so in a sustainable manner when our operating costs increase.
At Correspondents of the World, we want to contribute to a better understanding of one another in a world that seems to get smaller by the day - but somehow neglects to bring people closer together as well. We think that one of the most frequent reasons for misunderstanding and unnecessarily heated debates is that we don't really understand how each of us is affected differently by global issues.
Our aim is to change that with every personal story we share.
We believe in quality over quantity. To give ourselves a focus, we started out to collect personal stories that relate to our correspondents' experiences with six different global topics. However, these topics were selected to increase the likelihood that the stories of different correspondents will cover the same issues and therefore illuminate these issues from different perspectives - and not to exclude any stories. If you have a personal story relating to a global issue that's not covered by our topics, please still reach out to us! We definitely have some blind spots and are happy to revise our focus and introduce new topics at any point in time.
Discussions about the environment often center on grim, impersonal figures. Among the numbers and warnings, it is easy to forget that all of these statistics actually also affect us - in very different ways. We believe that in order to understand the immensity of environmental topics and global climate change, we need the personal stories of our correspondents.
Gender is the assumption of a "normal". Unmet expectations of what is normal are a world-wide cause for violence. We hope that the stories of our correspondents will help us to better understand the effects of global developments related to gender and sexuality, and to reveal outdated concepts that have been reinforced for centuries.
Our correspondents write about migration because it is a deeply personal topic that is often dehumanized. People quickly become foreigners, refugees - a "they". But: we have always been migrating, and we always will. For millions of different reasons. By sharing personal stories about migration, we hope to re-humanize this global topic.
We want to support the demand for justice by spotlighting the personal stories of people who seek liberation in all its different forms. Our correspondents share their individual experiences in creating equality. We hope that for some this will be an encouragement to continue their own struggle against inequality and oppression - and for some an encouragement to get involved.
Education is the newest addition to our themes. We believe that education, not only formal but also informal, is one of the core aspects of just and equal society as well as social change. Our correspondents share their experiences and confrontations about educational inequalities, accessibility issues and influence of societal norms and structures.
2020 is a year different from others before - not least because of the Corona pandemic. The worldwide spread of a highly contagious virus is something that affects all of us in very different ways. To get a better picture of how the pandemic's plethora of explicit and implicit consequences influences our everyday life, we share lockdown stories from correspondents all over the world.
Although we started just over a year ago, Correspondents of the World has a quickly growing community of correspondents - and a dedicated team of editors, translators and country managers.
What started with an idea and a design sketch for a website a little over a year ago now is becoming a proper platform. Everything we've achieved so far is due to the awesome team behind Correspondents of the World, thinking big, sharing their ideas and spending their free time to build a unique project. Our core team is the first port of call if you want to get into contact with Correspondents of the World, or if you have any questions about our project. We don't bite. Promise.
At correspondents of the World we believe in the strength of supporting one another. We love to get in touch with other initiatives to benefit from each others experience, share ideas and connect different communities.
Female Change Agents
Every day social entrepreneurial women around the world challenge the status quo by moving out of their comfort zone, donating their time, talents and life experience to manifest a positive change in their communities. These women act rather than waiting for authorities to arrange things for them. They act, without making a big deal out of it.
The Female Change Agents movement initiated by Dutch storyteller Lisa Koolhoven, agile coach Michèle Twomey (South African) and creative educator Iris Hofstetter from Berlin, aims to make these social entrepreneurial women visible by telling and publishing their stories and to grow a network of female change agents who can support and inspire one another and the world with their stories.
The aim is to collect stories of women from 6 continents, whose work is connecting to one ore more of the 16 sustainable development goals (SDG's). 96 stories, and SDG's to connect on, so the Female Change Agents movement itself is contributing to SDG 17 Partnerships for the goals.
Correspondents of the World is as much a community as an online platform. Please feel free to contact us for whatever reason!