Today, in the wake of the historic national and local elections that have just been held in Burkina Faso, the accountability of elected officials and decision-makers is regarded as a vital democratic necessity by increasing numbers of Burkinan citizens. The media, working alongside civil society, need to be able to understand this issue and then take stock of and report the population's expectations surrounding politics.
Launched at the beginning of 2015, the first phase of Faso Media sought to help Burkinan media outlets as they processed news for citizens and of public interest. This second phase is now aiming to give the media a greater role in the citizen-led control of public initiatives.
If the media are to fulfil this democratic function, then news professionals will need to develop a strong knowledge of the institutions and control procedures that are currently in place, so that they can provide the people with news that is relevant to them. This will also require information providers and social actors to wholeheartedly commit to greater transparency in the management of public affairs, and offer citizens platforms on which they can express their requirements.
This project is assisting both the Burkinan media (radio stations, written and online press, television stations, bloggers and political cartoonists) and civil society (CSOs, activists, citizens) in tackling these issues. It involves a series of initiatives conducted at both a national level (investigative journalism training programme, open data learning, production of civics education programmes and discussion programmes focusing on the key issues faced by society) and a local level (regional synergies, interview practice sessions, media management, and so on).
Members of UNALFA,journalists from 60 radio stations (privately owned local radio stations and public radio stations), from 4 privately owned television stations and from 10 written and online press organisations, 20 bloggers or internet activists and several civil society organisations (CSOs) from Burkina Faso, together with the citizens and the local authorities in the regions of Fada N'gourma and Bobo Dioulasso (pilot regions for part of the project).
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Making the various actors in civil society (citizens, CSOs, the media, activists) and the local authorities (political and traditional) more aware of the concepts of citizenship and accountability
- Setting-up of a scientific committee (civil society experts for providing advice and suggestions and mobilising citizens) and of an editorial committee (journalist-producers, CSOs and experts from specialist NGOs) ;
- Discussion seminar between local elected officials, CSOs, media organisations and internet activists, and regular local discussion workshops in the pilot regions;
- General knowledge training courses, so that journalists, bloggers and cartoonists can gain a better understanding of and deal with the issues linked with the citizen-led control of public initiatives;
- Competition for magazines that raise awareness of citizenship and citizen-led control;
- Civics education micro-programmes.
Consolidating the skills of Burkinan trainers: FasoMédias focuses on teachingFebruary 10, 2017
FasoMedias 2 Key concepts in citizen-led control of public initiatives: addressing them, understanding them and implementing themFebruary 13, 2017
FasoMedias kicks off for another 24 months!March 6, 2017
Amélie Gue – Committed journalist 2.0March 5, 2021
Enabling citizens, through the media and in partnership with CSOs and (internet) activists, to identify and clearly express their requirements in the public sphere and to exchange ideas and effectively discuss issues with the local authorities
In the pilot regions:
- Joint creation of programmes focusing on subjects of national or regional interest and citizen dialogue;
- Training courses on debating ideas/advocacy for young people, leading to touring 'battles' (oratorical contests between citizens) broadcast by the media (radio, TV, internet);
- Citizen demonstrations (Harmonie citoyenne – Citizen Harmony) with strong involvement from civil society, the media and local elected officials (debating contests for young people, programmes, concerts, production of music for raising awareness, political cartoons);
- Training courses for television stations on how to produce specialist programmes with CSOs (reporting, work on sources, sets, etc.);
- Training courses on radio interactivity;
- Support for bloggers and (internet) activists, in partnership with the Burkina Faso Bloggers' Association.
The challenge of interactive citizenshipOctober 30, 2017
100 young Burkinans trained in citizen public speakingNovember 23, 2018
Enabling citizens, and in particular young people who have first-hand experience of the power they can hold by mobilising as citizens, to become involved in devising and trialling projects that take their wishes into account
- Participation of young people in the production of programmes, in the devising of local projects, and in training and discussion workshops;
- Training courses on debating ideas/advocacy for young people in the pilot regions;
- Touring 'battles' (contests) or 'slams' involving young people, broadcast by the media (radio, TV, internet).
Helping the media and CSOs to more effectively exercise their rights in the citizen-led control of public initiatives
- Practical workshops focusing on documentary research and research on the internet;
- Training courses on interview techniques and investigative journalism;
- Open data learning, data journalism courses at basic and proficient level (levels 1 and 2);
- Assistance in setting up an innovative tool for the citizen-led control of public initiatives (Gouvernance Accès Facile – Easy Government Access), created by Tthe Balai Citoyen (Citizens' Broom) movement, lefaso.net, activists and developers, which makes it possible to follow meetings held between government ministers (concerning the allocation of public contracts, posts, etc.).
Investigative journalism training programme in Burkina Faso: call for applicationsMarch 13, 2017
Elected officials and civil society engaged in promoting citizen harmony in Bobo and FadaJuly 4, 2018
Encouraging the production and broadcasting of civics education programmes, discussion programmes, information programmes and citizen dialogue programmes, with content of general interest
- Production of programmes relating to the citizen-led control of public initiatives, following the general knowledge training course;
- Joint broadcasting of programmes;
- Harmonie citoyenne events;
- Production and broadcasting of specialist television programmes in partnership with CSOs.
Special Artists and Citizenship broadcast at FESPACO 2017March 17, 2017
Burkina Info TV, the Burkina Faso media organisation promoting democracyApril 17, 2018
Citizen Harmonies: from consultancy to mainstream programmesMay 10, 2018
Enhancing the long-term viability, management and governance of the beneficiary media outlets and of UNALFA, as project partner
- Strengthening management knowledge for radio stations already set up;
- Training courses on team management, business management and marketing, association management and social mobilisation for partner radio stations;
- On-site coaching sessions on management at partner radio stations;
- Material and logistic support for UNALFA;
- Project management training for UNALFA.
Consolidating the knowledge gained during the first phase of the Faso Media project: enhancing the capacities of media outlets and local trainers, joint broadcasting of programmes, etc.
- Capitalising on the Faso Media experience(documentary films, collections, videos, forms, guides);
- Training for local trainers (journalists and radio technicians);
- Provision of educational kits for journalists.