About Us

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Our Project

We want to support and connect podcasters from the WANA region

Aswatona is a comprehensive educational initiative that fosters connection and support for podcasters in the WANA (North Africa and West Asia) region, and beyond. The key aspect is to provide a platform for learning and collaboration through workshops and a mentoring program that enhance the skills of audio journalism, data security, and podcast production. Aswatona (ar. our voices) is also the name of our podcast that is produced by the participants of our program, as well as a trainee’s program, that empowers podcasters to give podcast trainings to others, thus building a community of competent audio journalists and producers in the future.

Our Focus

We aim to strengthen audio journalism and podcasting

The overall idea is to build up a sustainable transnational network for Arabic speaking podcasters to exchange and learn from one another on a peer-to-peer level within a safe space, in line with SDG 17. Within the educational program, we aim to strengthen professional audio journalism, which empowers people to speak up and participate in shaping society. The experts of our workshops and the mentors are all connected to the region as well as local NGO’s and activists, our participants are interacting with. The idea behind is not only to tighten our close meshed network, but to pursue a critical approach to the theory of development in general.

So we're into:

Transnational Networking

We are convinced that communication and exchange make this world a better place!

SPEAK

Telling Stories

The more we learn about a region, the more we learn about various perspectives, the easier it is to overcome stereotypes!

Empowering Women

At least 60% of our participants will be women to support their personal and professional development (SDG 5) and to strengthen their voices in the podcasting industry.

Strengthening Voices

We aim to give voices from WANA more space in English- and German-speaking countries!

Sharpening Skills

So many things to learn about podcasting, peer-to-peer as well as from experts who are happy to share their precious knowledge – let’s professionalize audio-journalism!

Data Security

We take privacy and data security very seriously

At times when many countries around the world exhibit autocratic tendencies, the safety of people who stand up for their rights is at risk. Women journalists, activists, and women working in NGOs are particularly affected. Therefore, we protect all staff, participants, and partner organizations through a security concept and complete anonymization if desired. 
Our Team

Want to know a bit about the team?

As one of our goals is to promote transnational communication, we, as a team, are also transnational. Our teamwork takes place predominantly online. Here you can see who is working behind the scenes:

Carlotta

Carlotta Hack

Project Coordination

Katrin

Katrin Sarah Schäfer

Project Management & Communication

Sabreen

Sabreen Taha

Podcast Production Coordinator

Rasha

Rasha Aldeeb

Regional Project Coordinator

Leonie

Leonie Nückell

Project Assistant

Tony

Tony Biel

Finance Management

Salma

Salma Shokry

Graphic Designer/Illustrator

Alaa

Alaa Yahia

Web Developer

Hanya 1

Hanya Nada

Intern [September 2023 – November 2023]

Konstantin

Konstantin Auwärter

Intern [Jan 2023 - March 2023]

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Implementer & Funders

Who is behind Aswatona?

Aswatona is a project of Yasmin Kollektiv e.V. – a non-profit association & non-government organization, based in Germany. We are funded by the German Federal Foreign Office, and the State Hessen.

Yasmin Kollektiv Logo
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Language is Power – Naming is Power

WANA: North Africa and West Asia; formerly known as MENA: Middle East and North Africa – we call it West Asia instead of Middle East, because Middle East is not a neutral geographic term but rather describes the region from a colonial perspective from the so-called “West”. With West Asia we’re trying to use a more neutral term geographic-wise.

Language is Power – Naming is Power

SDG: The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also known as the Global Goals, were adopted by the United Nations in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that by 2030 all people enjoy peace and prosperity.

Development: We are aware of the (post-)colonial continuities implied by the term “Development”, which is why we are constantly trying to question and deconstruct the way we think, speak, and work together. We want to offer an alternative to conventional development, that does not reproduce colonial structures of knowledge and power.