Our Valuable Voices: Community Digital Storytelling for Good Programming and Policy Engagement

"...[R]eflection, dialogue, debate and mobilisation are priorities for strengthening community voice and ownership."

Getting our mojo back with MOELJO

Author: Clare Lyons, July 22 2015 - One good thing that came from an unsuccessful grant application last year was the seed of an idea for what became our MOELJO course (mobile phone skills and...

Gender, Peace and Communication in the post-2015 debate...and why communication should be more than a cross cutting approach

Author: Valentina Baú, July 20 2015 - The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have represented a crucial framework in international development since their establishment in the year 2000. Two of...

Family Planning Law Campaign, Guatemala

"Indigenous Guatemalans have faced a multitude of barriers to access and use of family planning services....While the Guatemalan family planning law was a historic advancement towards empowering all...

Against the Wall: Women, Politics, and Graffiti in Egypt

Author: Stephanie Perrin, July 3 2015 - History often forgets revolutionary women, but those involved in the protests in Egypt since January 25, 2011 refuse to be overlooked and continue to build on...

Lin Lat Kyair Sin (Bright Young Stars)

"The aim... of our media development work is to create platforms that can reach audiences across both rural and urban Burma, providing them with information on governance issues and creating spaces...

What Role Do Localised Debate Programmes Play in Addressing Local Issues? Case Studies from Nepal

"Through supporting the production of local discussion programmes in Nepal, BBC Media Action’s Global Governance Project aims to provide a platform for ordinary people to raise important local issues...

After the Revolution: What Do Libyans and Tunisians Believe about their Media?

"What do the people of Libya and Tunisia believe about their media after the Arab Spring? What opinions do audiences in the two countries share, what are the differences between them and what...
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The Communication Initiative Network and Partnership convenes the communication and media for development, social and behavioural change community to share knowledge, connect, debate relevant issues, and critically review each other's work in order to advance effective development action across and between all development priorities. Contact Warren

Featured

Author: Fennovia Matakala, June 19 2015 - A sea of serious faces looked to the front of the local council chambers. Shuffling in anticipation, the crowd exchanged excited whispers.

Looking like they were attending the start of a high-...

"The radio magazine and discussion programme Nyakati Zinabadilika (Times are Changing) aimed to empower individuals and communities to adapt to changing weather patterns. Research suggests that the programme helped people to address climate-...

Vusumuzi Sifile

Author Vusumuzi Sifile, May 27 2015 - When Kwame Nkrumah and other African leaders met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in May 1963, they were driven by...

Lilian Kiefer

Author Lilian Kiefer, May 27 2015 In a society faced with high poverty levels, and limited participation of...

Author: James Deane, BBC Media Action Director, Policy and Learning, May 20 2015 - I was prompted to write this post by Brian Levy, the rightly respected governance...

This 41-page research report discusses how debates between candidates during elections affect voting behaviours, based on research conducted in Sierra Leone during the 2012 Parliamentary elections. Researchers collaborated with Search for Common...

Author: Sahib Khan, May 28 2015 - Exposure visits for journalists to areas like the drought-stricken Sindh province, Pakistan, are being organized by...

Implemented in 2011 in Colombia by PCI Media Impact and the Fundación Social (Social Foundation), this programme is designed to strengthen the capacities of members of community organisations, especially youth, on the use of the approach and...

Author: Liberty Bunce, March 23 2015: One of Nigeria's biggest stars, the singer, songwriter and producer 2Face Idibia, is standing in an abandoned Lagos power plant, saying over and over again that he's had enough. He's not complaining about the...

This toolkit is intended for journalists who are covering, or would like to cover, stories relating to sustainable development and the design and implementation proposed for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and related framework of...

Author: Gillies C Kasongo, March 4 2015 - Panos Institute Southern Africa (PSAf) commends local radio stations that are transforming themselves into platforms that provide local communities an opportunity to engage in dialogue on various...

Author: Tom Baker, February 18 2015, originally posted on World Radio Day, themed "Youth" (February 13 2015) - In this interview, Tom Baker explains how BBC Media Action is using the unique power of radio to inform, connect and empower young...

Published since 2009, Bingwa magazine for children is intended to be a source of information, advice, and fun for children aged 9-14. It also offers a space for children to speak up and be heard, with a particular focus on fighting corruption and...

Author: Anna Colom, February 13 2015 - It’s been a significant few months for the “Any Questions” style TV and Radio show Sema Kenya. As Senior Production Manager...

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Four 4 Women

Launched by the International Treatment Preparedness Coalition (ITPC) in collaboration with the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), the Four 4 Women campaign is a communication initiative advocating for

Communication Strategies: 

Research has undergirded this initiative, and is being communicated in face-to-face and media-centred global, national, and online advocacy efforts.

In May 2009, ITPC and its partners, including AIDS-Free World launched a 6-country research project conducted by civil society teams in Argentina, Cambodia, Moldova, Morocco, Uganda, and Zimbabwe. The findings of the report "Missing the Target 7: Failing Women, Failing Children: HIV, Vertical Transmission and Women’s Health" were promoted to a wide range of key stakeholders during the World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva, Switzerland, in May 2009. The Executive Director of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) organised a meeting at UNAIDS headquarters for ITPC to present the findings to over 100 UNAIDS staff. In addition, representatives from AIDS-Free World ITPC held a dialogue with several senior representatives of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

Here is a summary of the actions happening in one of the campaign's participating countries: Activists who undertook research for the ITPC's report "Failing Women, Failing Children" teamed up with the Argentinean Network of Women Living with HIV/AIDS (RAMVIHS) and the Argentinean Network of Positive People (REDAR POSITIVA) to launch a campaign during the National AIDS Conference of Argentina in August 2009. Copies of the report in Spanish, leaflets, and posters were distributed to a wide range of attendees, and the campaign was promoted in a plenary session. In September 2009, campaigners met with the head of National AIDS Program and UNAIDS Argentina country office representatives and called for increased national focus on the needs of women in relation to HIV programmes. They have also been providing input to the official government report and a shadow report on commitments such as Universal Access. The National Federation of Gays, Lesbians and Transgender Persons is also supporting the campaign and has helped promote it, resulting in an article in Observatorio Latino and interviews on Radio Nacional.

To read about other advocacy efforts taking place in the countries that are part of Four 4 Women, please visit the various links on the Actions page of the interactive, multimedia Four 4 Women website. This web platform aims to be a resource for advocates working on this issue, bringing together current policy and scientific documents and campaign materials, serving as a tool for e-campaigning, and providing a forum to coordinate actions across countries and partner organisations. Videos are available both on the campaign website and here, on the campaign's Facebook page.

Development Issues: 

HIV/AIDS, Women, Children.

Key Points: 

ITPC explains that infants born to women living with HIV can become infected during pregnancy, labour and delivery, or postpartum through breastfeeding. Without intervention, 25-40% of infants born to HIV-positive mothers will become infected with HIV. Without treatment, about half of these infected children will die before their second birthday. However, effective interventions do exist, and transmission of HIV from mother to child can be reduced to less than 5% if those interventions are accessed. As such, vertical transmission of HIV has been virtually eliminated in the global North. But, in 2008, an estimated 1.4 million pregnant women living with HIV in low- and middle-income countries, 91% of whom reside in sub-Saharan Africa, gave birth.

Partner Text: 

International Treatment Preparedness Coalition (ITPC), Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), Red Argentina de Personas Positivas (Red Ar Positiva), Red Argentina de Mujeres Viviendo con VIH-SIDA (RAMVIHS), Community of Cambodian Women Living with HIV (CCW), Childhood for All, Association de Lutte contre le SIDA (ALCS), HEPS for Health Rights, Dreams HIV and AIDS Youth Network, and Shiloah Zimbabwe.

See video
Source: 

Email from Aditi Sharma to The Communication Initiative on December 2 2010; and Four 4 Women website, December 3 2010.

Femme et Télévision au Maghreb (Women and Television in the Maghreb)

Subtitle: 
Amélioration de l’image de la femme dans les télévisions du Maghreb francophone
Author: 
Sahbi Ben Nablia
Publication Date
Publication Date: 
December 1, 2009

Published by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) Office in Rabat as part of its 2010-2013 programme to advance gender equality in media content of the Maghreb countries, this guide is designed to help television practitioners to create gender-sensitive TV content and to reduce stereotyping in their productions. It is the first in a series being produced to ensure gender equality in media content in the Maghreb.

Cost: 
Free to download
Languages: 

French

Number of Pages: 

58

Source: 

UNESCO website on December 2 2010.

Femmes et Radio au Maghreb (Women and Radio in the Maghreb)

Author: 
Sahbi Ben Nablia
Publication Date
Publication Date: 
September 1, 2010

Published by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) Office in Rabat as part of its 2010-2013 programme to advance gender equality in media content of the Maghreb countries, this guide is designed to help radio owners, managers, and producers to create gender-sensitive content and to reduce stereotyping in their productions. It is the second in a series being produced to ensure gender equality in media content and follows the first guide, Femme et television au Maghreb (Women and Television in the Maghreb).

Cost: 
Free to download.
Languages: 

French

Number of Pages: 

92

Source: 

UNESCO website on November 22 2010.

"Looking for Amina": An Experience of Forum Theatre

Author: 
Jordi de Miguel
Publication Date
May 1, 2010

This article from the Glocal Times, May 2010, explores how participatory approaches derived from Augusto Boal's Theatre of the Oppressed techniques can spark debates and action around migrant human rights and development in the European context. Through a case study, the author aims to shed light on the ways in which participatory communication in entertainment-education (E-E) initiatives "could contribute to the theory and practice of communication for development, especially in European countries... where dilemmas [resulting from] the...

Contact Information: 
Source: 

Email from Flor Enghel to The Communication Initiative on May 10 2010; and the Glocal Times website, May 2010.

http://www.comminit.com/files/logopatothom.jpg

The Language of Water

Implemented by Arca-MED, the communications branch of Arca Consulting, this film project involved the production of 4 documentarie

Communication Strategies: 

The 4 documentaries, each 52 minutes in length, explore water issues in 4 different sectors: water and peace, water conservation, water and health, and water and ecosystems. The contents were developed through a participatory field research process that involved interviews with personnel, acquisition and analysis of relevant documentation, and analysis of emblematic cases and success stories of individuals and communities. There were few formal interviews, since the strategy was to tell the stories with a creative approach by illuminating the daily life and activities of relevant community members. Themes highlighted in the stories concerning water include: innovation; changes in behaviour and practices; cultivations able to withstand water scarcity; examples of community participation or community-based initiatives; and examples of networking, south-south cooperation, and pooling of experience.

The films were produced through co-production agreements with television stations in each of the countries concerned. They have obtained, in exchange, the right to broadcast all 4 documentaries on their channels. The intended audience is within the Arabic speaking region, within the European region, and - internationally - via BBC World or the Arab television channels.

Click here to access, in PDF format, a dossier describing the films and the process in more detail.

Development Issues: 

Environment, Natural Resource Management, Peace, Health, Rights.

Key Points: 

Arca-MED explains that the various models developed by scientists in order to predict the effects of climate change indicate that the rise in temperatures and the change in rainfall patterns will produce more severe effects in some areas, including the Mediterranean. One of the consequences is the "intensification" of the water cycle - meaning that rainfall will be concentrated in fewer, severe storms, giving less time for the soil to absorb and store humidity. At the same time, the amount of precipitation in the Mediterranean will diminish. In conclusion, there will be less rain in absolute terms, and, of that rain, a larger share will be lost because of torrential runoff. All of this will happen in a region where water shortage is a centuries-old problem. "We can tell the story of conflicts about water, of how it affects life in the cities, on the farms and the steppe [per Wikipedia: a biome region characterised by grassland plain without trees apart from those near rivers and lakes]. Of how it affects and is affected by the quality of the environment, and the importance of conserving forests and even desert shrubs to save water resources. Of how cultures and society have developed different norms on its use and ingenious ways to make the best of it. Of the commitment of modern society, and of its failures."

Arca-MED continues: "Across our cultural and social differences, we share the awareness that water is a pressing issue, and of the need to develop synergies to address it. From being the subject of competition and even conflict, water can and must become a cross-cutting theme of cooperation, bridging our differences. Our objective is to use the universal language of water as a means to give birth to debate and meeting of minds and cultures, across the borders of religion, politics, and social layers, aiming at the development of practical, implementable solutions."

See video
Source: 

Email from Emanuela Gasbarroni to The Communication Initiative on May 24 2010; and Arca-MED website, May 27 2010.

L'Equipe Television Series - Morocco

Launched in early 2010, The Team, produced by Ali N Productions in collaboration with Ground Productions/Search for Common Ground (SFCG) in Morocco, is a serial drama for television designed to promot

Communication Strategies: 

The Team is designed for young people, who form the majority of the population in Morocco. The median age of Moroccans is 25 years old, with 57% of the population below the age of 29, and 28% falling into the 15-to-29 age group. The series follows two young men and their families: Mehdi, who comes from a wealthy family, and Samir, whose family is struggling to survive as his father's health deteriorates. Throughout the series, Samir and Mehdi struggle to overcome their differences and, ultimately, build trust. Their friendship is put to the test when Mehdi falls in love with Samir's sister, Soukaina, a beautiful young medical student.

The series is supported by a national outreach campaign led by 50 dialogue facilitators trained by SFCG who host community sessions to discuss the issues tackled in the series. The community outreach campaign works primarily with youth in economically poor communities, focusing on empowering them to become more actively engaged citizens. These youth often feel marginalised, excluded, and powerless. The Team's outreach campaign is engaging them in positive, constructive dialogue, giving them more opportunity to voice their opinions and be heard. A consistent theme throughout the series is that young people must have the opportunity to actively participate in society if there is to be positive social change in Morocco, and in their own lives.

The Team in Morocco has launched a website - a social networking space that incorporates an interactive blog, photos, videos, and other links - and an extensive campaign to diffuse the show's messages through the local press.

With technical support and content oversight from Common Ground Productions, the series was written and produced by Ali N Productions, owned by Nabil Ayouch, an internationally award-winning film producer and director from Morocco. The Team in Morocco has created a theme song – "Koora" by Mazagan – and music video. According to the organisers, Mazagan is known for revolutionising Moroccan popular music – reggae, raga, chaâbi, rock, alaoui, jazz, funk, zook – by creating "chaâbi-groove", which mixes rural singing with urban sound. The group consists of 8 musicians, including lead singer Issam Kamal, a former economist, on vocals, guitar, mandolin, and composition. Click here to view the music video on Youtube.

Twenty-six episodes of season One of L'Equipe were broadcast twice weekly on SNRT, a national television channel. The show is televised in Darija, the Arabic dialect of the Maghreb (Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, and Lybia). The organisers estimate that a large majority of the 30 million people of Morocco will watch the series. Click here to view episode summaries of the first series.

Click here to watch a trailer of The Team on YouTube.

Development Issues: 

Youth, Reconciliation, Citizenship

Key Points: 

The estimated viewership of The Team (Morocco) is at 22 to 23% of the population of 30 million. This is especially significant given that only 40% of Moroccans watch Moroccan – as opposed to satellite – television.

The Team in Morocco is one of a number of versions of the series produced in different countries for Common Ground Productions. According to SFCG, the production has merged the global appeal of football with soap opera to help transform social attitudes and diminish violent behaviour in countries grappling with deeply rooted conflict. The television series addresses the very real divisive issues facing societies in a dozen African, Asian, and Middle Eastern countries - using sport as a unifier to surmount barriers. Each production of The Team follows the characters on a football team who must overcome their differences – be they cultural, ethnic, religious, tribal, racial, or socio-economic – in order to work together to win the game. All of the series are created and produced locally. Actors and scriptwriters, who have experienced violent conflict and divisions firsthand, are drawn from local populations. Local production companies and technicians take the lead, with additional technical assistance and support from Common Ground Productions. In Africa, the series is being produced in Kenya, Morocco, Cote d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Liberia, Sierra Leone, Angola, Burundi, and Guinea.

Partner Text: 

Ali N Productions, Common Ground Productions

See video
Source: 

Search for Common Ground website on April 23 2010; and email from Deborah Jones to Soul Beat Africa on August 20 2010.

Intercultural Dialogue on Violence against Women

Communication Strategies: 

This advocacy project drew, first, on artistic expression to communicate - in a very personal way - the impact of violence against women. Namely, young women aged 18 - 40 years from each of the 5 countries were invited to enter a photo competition. Each participating country selected its 5 best entries. The photographs were evaluated for their creativity, originality, gender sensitivity, and their ability to raise awareness on Violence against Women to a wide audience, particularly youth. One final successful photographer from each country was then selected to travel to Cyprus to represent her country in a 2-day training workshop (see below for details), and to participate in the final exhibition, which was held for 1 week in November 2007 at the University of Nicosia.

Information sharing and capacity building complemented this creative component. A 2-day workshop that took place in conjunction with the exhibition joined together non-governmental organisation (NGO) activists, journalists, women from minority groups, as well as the short-listed candidates of the photo competition. Participants presented the situation of violence against women in their home countries, and then split up into working groups that discussed and reported back on issues such as the steps involved in developing projects for the prevention of violence against women, lobbying and advocacy strategies, approaches for carrying out effective awareness campaigns, and ways to promote gender equity in and through the media. Upon parting, participants discussed the formation of an online group as a method of communication and possibly creating a larger network for information sharing among young women and NGOs working on related issues in the region.

One suggestion to emerge from the workshop was that each partner organisation host a photo exhibition in their respective home countries as an awareness raising measure. To that end, Heura, the Spanish partner organisation, hosted an exhibition in Spain for the celebration of International Women's Day on March 8 2008. Another means of bringing this experience to a broader audience is the planned publication of a resource manual that will include a synthesis of the reports from all 5 partner countries, information from the workshop and training, and the short-listed photographs - with the award-winning photograph on the cover of the publication. Other tools for spreading the word will include press releases, electronic and audiovisual media, the internet, and lectures.

Development Issues: 

Gender, Women, Rights.

Key Points: 

MIGS states that "...There is consistent lack of research as well as lack of quantitative and qualitative data on the extent, forms and manifestations of violence against women in the Mediterranean region. This lack of information creates significant obstacles and enables states to avoid taking necessary measures and to deny that such a problem even exists in the region....Most of the southern countries do not have legislation on violence against women and attitudes to gender violence are extremely conservative and it is largely considered a private rather than a public matter."

Partner Text: 

MIGS (Cyrpus), the Isis Center for Women and Development (Morocco), Antigone - Information Centre on Racism, Ecology, Peace and Non Violence (Greece), AAW - Alliance for Arab Women (Egypt), and Heura (Spain).

Africa Education Watch

Africa Education Watch (AEW) is a three-year programme (June 2007 to December 2010) supported by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation through Transparency International Secretariat (TIS).

Communication Strategies: 

The programme was designed in two phases. The first phase involved conducting research among users and providers of primary education services. According to the organisers, the surveys were designed to approximate the levels of resource leakages and delays in transfers, the extent of illegal fees and other costs parents incur, and the effectiveness of the decentralised accountability structures. The data collected from this research are available on the Transparency International website in the form of fact sheets. The results of the research are also available in a report, published in 2010, titled Africa Education Watch - Good Governance Lessons for Primary Education [PDF].

As part of the second phase (the campaign phase), there have been extensive efforts made - both in surveyed countries and at global level - to ensure the effective dissemination of the results of the surveys and the effective mobilisation against corruption in primary education. The project is currently focusing on conducting advocacy at the national level to address a range of issues mentioned in the national assessment reports. The campaign seeks to bring other actors on board to undertake a broad advocacy campaign in coalition with other stakeholders.

In Uganda, specific activities have included: a launch of the AEW national assessment report; dissemination meetings and workshops in a number of cities; a media campaign; production of advocacy materials; drafting of an advocacy strategy; and an action planning meeting with civil society organisations in one district.

Development Issues: 

Democracy and Governance, Education

Partner Text: 

William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and Transparency International.

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