Dear Friend-

Welcome to the Nai Taleem Traveling Film Festival ‘06! This year’s festival is dedicated to Shri Siddhraj Dhadda, a Gandhian activist, who passed away this year.

The first Nai Taleem Traveling Film Festival is being organized in India! Your imagination and creativity in hosting the festival in your locality will help to set the stage for future festivals. Currently, more than 20 venues have indicated their interest in hosting the festival (see attached list). We expect Nai Taleem '06 to travel to many more cities and venues around India and around the world, helping to stimulate much-needed critical and creative thinking about learning communities for the 21st century. In this letter, we have included some suggestions for organizing the festival in your area. We would appreciate it if you can go through this letter and email the last page back to us.

We are excited that you have agreed to host this event in your area. There is a lot of freedom in organizing the event in terms of space, timing, publicity, discussion groups, etc. We want to encourage maximum creativity to break out of the often stiff, over-formal and elitest nature of official firm festivals. We hope this event inspires people to think about education and learning in new ways – starting with their own lives. Shikshantar is encouraging schools, educational bodies, NGOs, social movements and film enthusiasts in towns and cities large and small – all over – to consider hosting the Nai Taleem Film Festival. So if you have interested friends in other areas, please ask them to get in touch with us.

- Please note that the festival will only travel to cities where host individuals or organizations are willing to take full responsibility for publicity, screenings and all associated logistics. (There can be multiple screenings in one city.) We must make it clear at the outset that ABSOLUTELY NO MONEY can be charged for this festival. We have obtained permission from the various filmmakers and production houses to show these films in the public interest, and therefore no money can be exchanged or earned from screening the films that is, no entry fees. We also would like to say that, in keeping with the spirit of Nai Taleem, NO AWARDS OR COMPETITION should be included within this festival. We thank you in advance for your cooperation and understanding.

- The Nai Taleem package comes with the 19 films (see enclosed) in VCD or DVD format, posters, festival brochure and display materials. The mix of documentary and feature films is in a variety of languages all having English sub-titles (a significant number of films are in Hindi). Cumulatively, the films constitute approximately 12 hours of viewing time. We envision the audience for the films to be teachers, educationists, B.Ed students, social work students, parents, youth activists, etc. You will be responsible for photocopying the festival brochure and description of films as well as the posters.

- The central principle we would like to invoke when thinking about where to host the event is accessibility. The venue should be easily accessible to people of all ages, sizes, shapes, etc. The size of the event (from 5 – 250) is up to you, depending on what you feel comfortable with. Just try to make sure that you don’t sacrifice quality for quantity.
- You can try to enter into a partnership for space, so that you do not need to spend money for rental. You can invite people to co-host the festival in exchange for their support.
¦ Explore open public spaces, such as your city’s Information Center. Or if you have a projector and speaker, you may consider holding an open-air festival in a public park or garden.
¦ Local community halls may be available. Talk with community leaders, where the special focus could be with their community, but they may be open to other communities attending.
¦ B.Ed. Colleges may also be open to hosting the festival, particularly for their students and faculty. You may also ask them to be open to inviting the larger public.
¦ Your home or office is also a possibility where you can screen the films on a TV set. Small is beautiful! An intimate gathering may even allow discussions to go deeper than a large event.

- The Festival should be hosted anytime between August – December 2006. The dates will be in your hands. Please schedule as soon as possible and let us know the dates in your locality so that we can post them on the email/web to others.
- Consider your primary audience. What timings will work best for them? Mornings and afternoons tend to be better for students; evenings are usually the best option for working people; Saturday and Sunday may be open to all.
- The festival is split up into four 3-hour slots. It could be held over four evenings (say 7-10 pm) or two days (say 5-8 pm, 8-11 pm); or maybe as a full day Sunday program (10 am to 10 pm).
- Try to leave some time after each session for discussion of the films.

- There are numerous ways to creatively publicize the event while keeping the publicity budget down. The idea of the festival is to get new people (not those who typically go to official festivals) to come and see the films.
- You can print the enclosed poster, modifying it your own information, and take it around to community centers, schools, temples, mosques, churches, local businesses, public libraries, shops, chai stalls, restaurants, etc. As much as possible, talk with someone specific there and ask them for assistance in publicity. You may also ask them for a time where you might speak publicly to their audience.
- You can also make your own posters and ask designers/children/youth to think about what nai taleem means to them. If you make your own posters, please send copies to Shikshantar so that we can share with others.
- You may hire a tanga (bullock cart or camel cart or horse cart) which can announce the festival through a simple microphone and pass out small flyers. Typically this can be done at very minimal cost for a few hours. You may focus especially on the area where you are hosting the festival.
- A press release to your local newspapers, especially those that feature local events, is good to share. If you have a city information center, it may be good to get in touch with the PR representative there, as s/he usually maintains close contact with the newspapers. We will send you a sample copy of a press release which you can modify for your situation.
- If possible, you can contact your local cable channel and ask them to air simple announcements of the festival.

- We hope that you will be able to facilitate some discussion after each block of films. This will help to deepen understanding of the content, share diverse experiences, relate the films to our own local contexts, and inspire new forms of collaborative activity. Budget allowing, you may want to invite the individual filmmakers to your venue.
- In addition to the films, you may wish to organize some Seminars on Learning for the 21st Century during the Festival. If you are interested in doing so, please contact us for more ideas on this.
- The Festival is also an opportunity to connect with the innovators in learning in your community. You may also have a mela (fair) during the festival, where individuals and groups may feature their work and practices and host mini-workshops. This could happen in off-times, or even as the festival is running, so people can have a few options. Interesting individuals or groups may also be invited to host discussions after films, so as to enrich the level of dialogue.
- There will also be a set of publications related to Nai Taleem that can be put on display.
- While it is not obligatory, you may also consider inviting someone associated with Shikshantar from Udaipur, who will be able to introduce the festival before the local audience and also help to facilitate the discussion sessions and seminars. Any host seeking the presence of Shikshantar team members will be requested to pick up the related cost of travel and stay.

- Our working principle is “contribute what you can plus a little more”. The recommended contribution for obtaining the Nai Taleem package will be Rs.500 which will be used to cover cost of copying CDs and postage.
- We also ask that you consider making a contribution to the individual filmmakers or their organizations for films that you plan on screening again in the future or for films that you plan on copying. The filmmakers have very graciously agreed to waive their charges for the purposes of this Festival, despite themselves being in difficult financial circumstances. You generous contribution will help to support their future work.

I have read through the basic terms for hosting the Nai Taleem Film Festival in my area and am in agreement with it. Please send me the package of materials for the Film Festival. I am enclosing a DD payable to Shikshantar Sansthan, Udaipur.

Date: ______________________________ Name: _________________________________

Signature: __________________________



Phone: _________________________________

Email: _________________________________

I plan on hosting the Nai Taleem Festival from _______________, 2006 to

___________________, 2006 at the following venue ______________________________.