Stories From Nepal

Life Uninterrupted

Chance for Change and Restless Development teamed up with Handheld Stories to make these workshops a reality. In April of 2014, Handheld traveled to Sundrawati to offer a several students the chance to tell their own stories. After only a few days of intensive learning, this small group of students opened a window to their world – offering a glimpse of life in rural Nepal that only they could offer.


Alcohol in rural Nepali communities and its toll on the family.


Great camera work from Suraj documenting the prevalence and normalcy of traditional alcohol use among kids in rural Nepal.


Juna takes on an incredibly sensitive and important topic with great interview skills.

The Dharavi Workshops

Slumdog Millionaires?

Immortalized by it’s appearance in the blockbuster film, Dharavi Slum, located in the heart of Mumbai, is home to nearly 1 million people living in an area roughly 1 square mile in size. That’s about 18,000 people per acre. Most exist with no running water, electricity, health care or educational opportunities. Occupying a patch of land smack dab in the middle of India’s financial capital, Dharavi is a city within a city, it is one unending stretch of narrow dirty lanes, open sewers and cramped huts.

In August of 2012, Handheld volunteers spent 4 weeks teaching students in Dharavi how to tell their own stories. And you will be surprised how much their reality very much collides with the popular opinions of what it might be like to live in those conditions.

The project was made possible through it’s association with Trishya Screwvala, Founder and Director of Raindancer, NGO. Their vision is to inspire and mobilize urban Indian youngsters to actively contribute towards positive social impact, thereby enabling inclusive growth. Handheld’s workshops were an obvious fit.

Pollution in Dharavi

This short film shows the levels of pollution and trash in the Dharavi slum. Produced by Sagar and Rohit, both students of Shree Ganesh Vidya Mandir School in Dharavi.

The People of Dharavi

This short film shows the difference between poor and rich people and their living conditions in the slum of Dharavi. Produced by Lakhan and Yuvraaj, both students of Shree Ganesh Vidya Mandir School in Dharavi.

Our School

Santoshi and Ankita, both students of Shree Ganesh Vidya Mandir School in Dharavi made this short film about their school.

Don’t Close Our Well

A short film about a small well that is used by many different people in Dharavi. Produced by Yogesh and Mayur, both are students of Shree Ganesh Vidya Mandir School in Dharavi.

Making Ganesha Idols

With more than 17,000 views – our most popular video to date.

Independence Day

How these students celebrate the yearly event.

The West Bank Workshops


Handheld’s inaugural workshop took place in the West Bank in association with community leader Zleikha Muhtaseb of the Dreams Theater in Hebron. Over a 2 week period 10 students aged 10-16 received hands-on training in the basics of video production and digital storytelling. For all the participants, this was the first time making a video. For some, it was their first time holding a camera.

To say their videos reflect experiences not found in mainstream media would be an understatement.

Shuhada Street

An almost daily event for kids living in Hebron, Palestine. I loved how calm they remained despite, well, have a look…

Cave of the Patriarchs

Handheld trainees describe the situation on the ground at the Ibrahimi Mosque, which is considered a holy site for both sides, also known as the Cave of the Patriarchs.

The Ibrahami School in Hebron is over 100 years old. Today students face many difficulties just trying to get into it on a daily basis – here they tell us the story of the Ibrahimi School and what life is like as a student.