Social Media in Africa

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Three years ago I spent five weeks in Central Africa Republic. Traveling around the countryside and visiting with nationals was rewarding in many ways. If you asked me then, I would have never foreseen what direction the country was headed. I could never have imagined the once beautiful capital of Bangui would turn into war torn rubbish, filled with refugees fleeing from harm.
Central Africa Republic is in the middle of a war brought on by its own people. Muslims and Christian’s battle back and forth aggressively killing one another and inputting fear into many. Humanitarians have been risking their lives attempting to stop the chaos and bring the country back to order. Organizations like the United Nations and UNICEF are doing their part to provide for the refugees, while individuals like Peter Bouckaert and Samantha Power are meeting with rebel leaders encouraging peace. Social media, in particular Twitter, has been a major platform for these organizations and individuals to share with the world the experiences they are encountering daily. Using Twitter hashtags like #CAR and #CARcrisis allows for stories to be told and information to be released throughout the world. Individuals worldwide are becoming aware of the circumstances happening overseas by simply opening their Twitter account, and not just from mainstream news sources.
The crisis in Central Africa Republic is only one example of social media’s impact on the humanitarian sector. This is becoming a larger

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