practitioners have undergone training on child protection and reporting child
issues by the Child Protection Alliance, funded by the EU project of
intervention of promoting children’s rights in the Lower River, Central River
and Upper River regions, held at the Baobab Holiday Resort on 28 November 2017.
The aim of the training was to generate interest among media practitioners on children’s rights, promoting children’s rights, to promote children’s participation in media work, help track abuse cases involving children and contribute towards the generation of advocacy information on child rights issues.
The Executive Director of Action-Aid International-The Gambia, Omar Badjie stated that the training was expected to increase media interest in children’s welfare by helping in bringing the issues of children to the public domain for debate and policy development.
He hoped that the training would increase the protection of children through proper and ethical reporting of children’s rights violation issues and greater participation of the public in children’s affairs.
Director Badjie added that the violations of children at any level must be everyone’s concern which requires the collective attention and actions to end all forms of violations against children.
He pointed out that there are a lot that the society could benefit from the empowerment of the media, especially in terms of providing credible and realistic information on the rights of children.
He added that the role of the media in ensuring the protection of children’s rights could not be overemphasized; hence the media, Badjie said, was responsible for sharing information about children such as policies and laws for the protection of children.
He highlighted the importance of media whose responsibility was for making the public aware of any violations that take place within any society at any level such as family, home, community and national levels.
It was therefore critical and necessary that reporters have a good understanding of children’s rights and what constitute violations of those rights for proper and realistic reporting, he stated.
Abdoulie Faye of the Child Protection Alliance said it was important to relate with the media so that they could have a greater understanding of how to report child issues as well as ethical issues that protect the welfare of children.
Their motive was to create rights that are effective for every human being to live, especially for the children that they want a brighter future for, hence they should prepare the young generation to meet their goals.
He disclosed that the essential of the training was part of the code of conduct of the Gambia Press Union on how to report on child issues and how it should be enhanced.
The annual award of journalist on child reporting has been dormant, he lamented, adding that it was important to equip the journalists with professional reporting standards and guard information concerning child issues.
He further called on the participants to participate effectively in order to achieve the goal of the project, saying that the relationship and partnership between the Media and CSOs would be strengthened in the interest of everyone.
Lamin Fatty, programme officer at the Child Protection Alliance said they value the long-standing partnership with the media as they both operate on the same platform, they it found necessary to empower the media in a complementary and accountability role in promoting rights, creating awareness and empowerment.
He stated that the aim of the training was to create a conducive environment for journalists to uphold their responsibilities.