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Women and girl's rights in Sierra Leone: Let Us Know!

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Author: Olabisi Olu Garrick, February 23 2015 - Despite my fourteen years as a journalist, I didn’t always want to work in the media. I actually wanted to be a lawyer.

The ability to hold people to account and help people understand their legal rights always appealed to me. Little did I know that a chance meeting with a woman one sunny afternoon would change my life.

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Look beyond numbers: we need to know why change happens

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Author: BBC Media Action's Head of Research Programmes Sonia Whitehead, originally posted September 13 2017 - Working in the development sector I am aware that, particularly over the last few years, donors and others expect project results to be quantifiable. Numbers talk.

This was apparent at the UN World Data Forum in Cape Town in January when we looked at how the SDGs will be measured, and it was discussed again at the Esomar World Research Congress in Amsterdam this week. Donors want statistics to demonstrate impact and show a project is value for money, but aren’t as confident using insights from qualitative research.

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Six steps towards a more open media

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Author: BBC Media Action's Director of Policy and Research James Deane, originally posted September 14 2017 - On the International Day of Democracy, James Deane sets out six ways in which a resurgent public interest media can help improve accountability and foster transparency.

Strategies being used to improve accountability and foster transparency are not working well enough.

Corruption is on the rise, people do not feel that traditional institutions are delivering effective accountability, and there is a decline in trust in institutions as a whole. Authoritarianism and populism are resurgent.

The solutions to these challenges are huge but I want to set out six things which need to happen if democracy support is to become more effective.

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Media Development Needs a Community of Scholars

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Authors: CIMA's Paul Rothman and Nick Benequista, originally posted September 5 2017 - International assistance to media is facing an existential crisis. While there is a growing recognition of the importance of international assistance to media, the current models of support seems futile when confronted by the magnitude of the current challenges to journalism.

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Express yourself: asking fresh questions with Facebook Live in Nepal

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Author: BBC Media Action Nepal Stakeholder Liaison Pratibha Tuladhar, originally posted Augusut 31 2017 - Social media is providing a platform for young voices in a new programme called Taja Sawal (Fresh Questions) in Nepal. The studio painted with murals by volunteers illustrates the vibrant and youthful approach to the new show. Pratibha Tuladhar speaks with the two new young presenters to get the full picture.

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South Asia floods: Two million children shut out of schools by disaster

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Author: Shabir Arain, originally posted on August 31 2017 - At least 18,000 schools damaged or destroyed across Bangladesh, India and Nepal. Severe flooding and landslides in Bangladesh, Nepal and India have prevented around 1.8 million children from attending schools across the region. At least 1,200 people have been killed in south Asia’s worst flooding in the year with more than 40 million affected.

Thousands of schools are being used as emergency evacuation shelters and at least 18,000 have been damaged or destroyed by the floods, which is putting children’s education and long-term well-being at risk, Save the Children has warned.

Hundreds of thousands of children could fall permanently out of the school system if education is not prioritised in relief efforts.

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Local community driven initiatives, part II - United effort of local people can change the food production scene

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Author: Suman Chowdhury Mony, August 29, 2017 - Every year, there is a huge production of crops and vegetables in many countries. Developed countries utilize all of their production, but that is difficult for the developing and underdeveloped countries. Poor economy, lack of proper planning, corruption, waste of money, political unrest, etc., are the main obstacles for those countries.

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Communication is aid: BBC Media Action response to floods in Sierra Leone, Nepal, Bangladesh and India

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Author: BBC Media Action's Senior Communications Manager Nick Henegan, originally posted August 18 2017 - In the aftermath of a disaster information is as important as food, water and shelter. It can save lives. This week BBC Media Action teams from West Africa to South Asia have been delivering vital, life-saving information to people affected by a series of devastating floods.

In Sierra Leone, where mudslides and floods have killed almost 400 and hundreds are still missing our team has been using their Facebook page, the most popular in the country, to provide information on how to access emergency numbers and centres where those affected can access food, clothing and other assistance.

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Toilet: Ek Development Communication Katha

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Akshay Kumar is fast emerging as a very unlikely bearer of varied and content-driven Hindi cinema. Derided by the reigning Hindi cinema establishment and its audience bank as 'Bharat Kumar 2.0' for his off-screen nationalistic messages and works, the prolific actor's latest film - despite its shortcomings - could end up as a case study on development communication, or Communication for Development (C4D), in the Indian context.

Director Shree Narayan Singh's Toilet: Ek Prem Katha (TEPK) is a social satire revolving around Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.

Keshav (Akshay Kumar) and Jaya (Bhumi Pednekar) are natives of two adjoining rural neighbourhoods of Mathura district in Uttar Pradesh. After a brief period of wooing and cajoling by Keshav, Jaya gives in and the two get married.

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Speaking up for Ebola survivors in Sierra Leone

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Author: BBC Media Action Sierra Leone's Head of Production, Allieu Sesay, originally posted August 7 2017 - Abass became a voice for Ebola survivors across Sierra Leone. Allieu Sesay tells his ongoing story.

Holding his baby daughter in his arms, today Abass looks like any other proud father. But when we first met three years ago, at the peak of the Ebola epidemic in Sierra Leone, it seemed hard to imagine this day would come.

Then I was spending nearly every day making radio programmes to share life-saving information to stop the virus spreading. Abass was volunteering at a health centre in Freetown. As an Ebola survivor he had some immunity to the virus and wanted to help other patients.

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