Oral testimonies

Oral testimonies are audio-recorded personal accounts that draw on a person’s direct memories, experiences and opinions.  By training local people, interviewing can be done in the narrator’s preferred language, and the style and approach allow even the “quieter” members of a community to participate.

Over the last 20 years, through over 50 Panos projects, around 1300 people in 40 countries have had the chance to share their personal experiences and views on development.


Co-facilitators listening to a poem by one of the participants, oral testimony workshop, Ethiopia

HIV stigma 21 stories 21 days

Extracts from interviews with 21 men and women living with HIV in Ethiopia, Swaziland and Mozambique. Recorded as part of the Give Stigma the Index Finger project


Madagascar,  Rural Poverty Report, April, 2010

Rural poverty  http://www.ifad.org/rpr2011/testimonials/index.htm

Interviews and photographs with 29 men and women living in rural areas of China, Egypt, Madagascar, Pakistan, Peru and Senegal recorded for IFAD’s Rural Poverty Report 2011.


Shimshal women 2Mountain development www.mountainvoices.org

This ‘vintage’ website from 2000 presents interviews with over 300 people who live in mountain and highland regions round the world (Poland, Nepal, Pakistan, India, China, Kenya, Lesotho, Ethiopia, Peru and Mexico).  Their testimonies offer a personal perspective on change and development.


Bihar OIivia 6

Displacement Displaced: the human cost of displacement

This award-winning publication draws on over 300 interviews with the displaced, from India, Pakistan, Botswana, Namibia, Kenya, Zambia and Zimbabwe as part of an international oral testimony resettlement project.


Women and Conflict: http://panos.org.uk/resources/arms-to-fight-arms-to-protect/ A radio docu-drama from this project will come online soon.

Oral testimonies on poverty, environmental change and living with HIV and AIDS: http://panos.org.uk/oral-testimonies/ (2005-2012)

Related outputs:

http://panos.org.uk/resources/all-together-now-oral-testimony-theatre-media-debate/ (2011)