Untold stories

Are we Europe is an organization
based in Brussels. The needs of
journalism that collaborates
across nations, generations and
identities were reasons for
founding this organization. That
highlights solutions to shared
challenges. That focuses on its
people, Main mission is to bring
to the European world borderless
journalism from the next
generation of storytellers.

The initiative

The project is called Untold Cyprus and the implementation of it is an instagram account called: Unshadow Cyprus. The mission of this project is to bring the spotlight to the everyday heroes that we come across while we are walking, while we are ordering a coffee or even people from our families. The media only focuses on stories from the continent’s richest and most powerful countries without bringing the opportunity to people who have to say something new in the local community. We hold seven interdisciplinary workshops in seven countries, where young journalists and activists work together to localize on the most pressing issues of our time and their ideas for our common future. Create an immersive multimedia story platform with. The workshop we participated in lasted one week and it was served with the values of normal education and focusing on the needs of the local society of Cyprus. Brainstorming, role playing and team building were some of the activities that helped the effectiveness of the project. After the introduction of the aims and highlighting our goals, we were divided into two teams. One was the Campaign team and the other was the Journalist team. Each one has a different way to present their work but the same way to produce content. Interviewing people who we think have a good impact in society and they have an interesting untold story to say. Some of our interviewers were activists, LGBTQ2+representatives, artists, refugees, Erasmus students etc. This is how we tried to present people who are minorities in Cyprus or they are less represented in the society.

Living with the pandemic

There are a lot problems who young people are facing nowadays. Apart from the covid, youngsters living in Cyprus they face the lack of employability, there are not job position for musician, actors, dancers, athletes. And that because, the Cypriot society doesn’t understand that these are also professions which can give you money and leave a print in the cypriot community. People are encouraging students to study logistics, business and generally traditional studies, discouraging the same time those youngsters who have talents in artistic professions. These is a vicious circle. Unproductivity or sad employees. And a lot young cypriots migrate in other European countries. Another reason to migrate, is the low salary. The life is Cyprus is quite expensive so with an average salary, you can’t rent your own house and be able to pay all the bills. So, they prefer to stay with their families try g to eliminate their costs. This is an example how young people live in Cyprus. In the one hand, there is the tradition to stay with your family because we are very attaching to it, but from the other hand is the government which is forcing us, providing us a poor-quality life compared to other European countries. Moreover, cypriot politics pay everyday too much attention to the cypriot conflict, forgetting the nowadays problems we are facing. Or society’s gaps. For example, the traffic, the lack of representation of LGBTIQ+ community, the migration problem, the climate crisis, the weak education system. All of these are causes a young person thinking every day and give him/her extra stress since the government doesn’t pay attention. As a part of the society, we don’t feel supported by our government because they are focusing in other problems than the serious ones. It’s a pity the facts that we have so many ideas to improve our community and create a better future. Although, the politics doesn’t allow us doing it and the system is blocking us. However, thanks to many NGOs and other informal groups, we feel supported and always they are by our side for helping and encouraging.

The positive message

A global issue, such as a pandemic it’s an interruption to our daily lives. Although, we have to stay focused and not give up our creativity, goals and willingness to be closed in a paper box called “Covid9”. We are very happy because through this project we managed to get out of this box and think like there is no box. In such harsh situations we are living for 2 years and we are obliged to find the silver lining and live with every paper box. “Untold stories” is the best example for it.