If you are trying to get maximum publicity for your charity, it’s probably not a good idea to name your charity in Latin.
But if your charity’s main objective is to prevent and stop human rights abuses through gathering visual evidence with which to influence the powers that be, then maximum publicity is not top of your agenda.
The term “videre est credere”, as even a Latin scollop like myself knows, means “seeing is believing”, which does encompass much of the ethos of the charity.
Brian Eno is the charity’s patron and it was through him that I was invited to this function, held at Brian’s studio. I had been to a previous function there for Videre, a few years ago when the organisation was still much smaller and even more “early stage” than it is now.
The function was mostly party; far more low key than Brian’s free-form parties, but still a most enjoyable mingling with interesting people, many of whom from arty walks of life I encounter rarely these days.
Brian said a few thoughtful words on how increasingly important it is to have credible, video evidence to expose abuses of power. A couple of the Videre people also spoke and showed some sample video.
Naturally, given the nature of the work Videre does, there is an element of caution around discussing exactly who does Videre’s work and where they are doing it. As the organisation gets a bit older (it is now 8 or 9 years old) there will be more of an historic trail of case studies, I suspect. Much (but not all) of the work is in Africa and you wouldn’t need a PhD in international relations to guess the identity of some of the countries.
I wish there was more that I could do for this organisation. I guess they’ve reached the stage where raising funds is a key constraint but charity fundraising of this kind is a specialist field; not mine. The skills they need for their actual operations are also quite specialised. The areas where my expertise might help (governance, strategy, risk etc.) seem well covered; I chatted with some very interesting people from the charity’s board and its network of helpers.
Still, I know what Brian is like, so I suspect there might come a time when I get tapped up for something I might do to help Videre and for sure I’ll be a willing tapee.
I did spend some time beefing up the Wikipedia entry with independent references. Ironically (given Videre’s name and purpose) the entry was flagged for lack of credibility due to insufficient independent references. At the time of writing, flagged no more – click here for the Wikipedia link.
Anyway, all sorts of weird and wonderful people read Ogblog. Many of you are people with the astonishingly powerful attention span to read 500 word blog pieces. Some of you are also people with the resources, skills and/or influence to help Videre. If so, do contact them through the website – here’s that website link again.