Why is something about Egypt called “The Delta Project?”
The Delta Project is an effort by a team of three former Fulbright-Egypt grantees to use multimedia journalism to document Egypt's historic upcoming fall and spring elections.
But that doesn’t answer your question. And that’s not why it’s unique.
The novelty of the project is that we’re doing this exclusively from the viewpoint of the largely unknown Delta region (from the Delta to the Suez Canal Zone), where all three individuals lived over the past year, and where roughly 50% of the Egyptian population resides.
The goal of our coverage is to provide a layer of descriptive context that can play foil to the stories coming out of Cairo, and which tend to focus on the same themes (Muslims vs. Christians, women and more/less rights, Islam and democracy).
(Demonstrators display images of martyrs from their home city. Not in Cairo. Never covered.)
So what does that really mean our project is doing?
It means we want to write very in-depth stories about groups of people who don’t often get very much coverage, be it Delta labor organizers, fledgling political parties, or religious leaders who conduct their work far outside the country’s capital. But more specifically, we’re going to use these stories to collectively narrate how this hugely important region mobilized for their first free democratic elections.
In other words, we witnessed first hand the way in which the Cairo-based media neglected the Delta region’s story during the revolution – we were there watching it unfold. This time around, we want to ensure that the region’s unique vantage point is documented.
But we’re not activists, and this isn’t a campaign to raise awareness. We’re mostly doing this because we’re certain this will be a genuinely exciting story, and we’re obsessed with following it.
With over 50 new political parties having emerged since the revolution, 50 million people eligible to vote, and nearly everyone passionately engaged in shaping the rebirth of their country, the Delta will be an unusually electric environment.
(August 26 demonstration, or as some might say: just another Friday afternoon in the Delta.)
So why us?
Our team has been living in Egypt for the past year working in cities that most journalists will never see, like Mansoura, Ismailia, Zagazig, and Alexandria. We have contacts throughout the region, are conversant in Arabic, and are collectively a journalist, photographer, researcher, and former Middle East policy analyst. Two of us will be working from Egypt and another from the U.S.
So what, exactly, are we producing?
Logistically speaking, we plan to release one new segment of the project each week to our website, theegyptreport.com. Each segment will focus on a theme or specific location in the Delta and will be comprised of a long form article, photography, and a series of short film clips. At the end of the project this spring, we will edit and compile our segments to create an eBook which holistically will tell the story of the Delta's first elections. A DVD of the film clips will also be released.
And where is this money going?
We are willing and able to do this on a shoestring budget (we learned long ago how to survive in Egypt on next to nothing), so we are only asking for what is absolutely essential to, quite literally, our survival for the following eight to nine months.
This includes costs of transportation around the Delta, accommodations so we can stay on location over night, and, lest we not starve, basic food.
Any money we receive over our target will greatly improve the project, as we can use it to make various upgrades, such as professional translation aides to speed up our work and allow us to produce more content, and audio visual upgrades to enhance the quality of our film segments.
*A note about rewards: the highest few rewards, i.e. the interview, project manager, and trip, can be arranged to take place any time during the duration of our project or immediately after (so at least through June). The delivery date only refers to the hard copy items, including the eBook, that you would also be receiving.
- (20 days)