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Monday, 28 July 2014

UNDP GEF SGP grantees trained on Citizen Journalism

By Bob Aston
The Arid Lands Information Network (ALIN) conducted a three days Citizen Journalism training for United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Global Environment Facility (GEF) Small Grants Programme (SGP) grantees from Laikipia County at Olympia Hotel in Nyahururu from 22nd to 24th July 2014.
The UNDP GEF SGP grantees present during the training included; Kantuka Community Based Organization, Upper Ewaso Narok Water Resource Users Association, Tuungane Tusaidiane community project, Kenya Organic Agriculture Network (KOAN),Yiaku Laikipia Trust and Laikipia Central Community Development (LAICCODO).
Mr. Mugo addressing the participants
Also present included representation from Agricultural Sector Development Support Programme (ASDSP) and officials from Laikipia and Baringo County Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation, Fisheries, Livestock Development, Environment and Natural Resources.


Mr. Philip Nandwa, officer of Environment and Natural Resources in Baringo County said that he has now been empowered on how to create a blog. Mr. Nandwa has already created a blog that their department will now be using to disseminate natural resources and environmental conservation matters in Baringo County.
He was initially not included in the training but when he heard about it from ALIN he requested to attend the training.
“It will now be easier to document and disseminate what we are doing to the general public through the blog that I have created for Environment and Natural Resources in Baringo. The training came at an ideal time as knowledge sharing has always been an issue. Most people rarely share what they are doing,” said Mr. Nandwa.
The training provided the grantees with an opportunity to learn about news writing, creative writing, feature writing, photography, interviewing, online journalism (blogging) and media law and Ethics.
The training will help the grantees to capture and document indigenous knowledge relevant to sustainable land management practices for posterity. The training will also help to enhance content creation for the quarterly magazine called Laikipia Maliasili which was started by the grantees.
The grantees sharing ideas during the training
Laikipia Maliasili is expected to help in closing knowledge gaps, promote sharing of projects experiences among grantees, connect beneficiaries to policy makers, improve accessibility of indigenous knowledge, enhancing feedback of project activities, promoting replication as well as ensuring that the communities are better informed about Sustainable Land Management (SLM).
The UNDP GEF SGP grantees will be using blogs that they created for their respective organizations as well as Laikipia Rural Voices (LRV) blog for disseminating project activities. This is also aimed at enhancing online visibility of UNDP GEF SGP Project.
The training will enable the grantees to be able to look at news from different angles and in addition give them a deeper understanding of what is going on in the outside world.  It will also give them an opportunity to be part of a global community of men and women who are passionate about development news.
The development of information and communication technologies has led to the emergence of citizen Journalism, also referred to as “participatory Journalism.”Citizens are now playing an active role in the process of collecting, reporting, analyzing and disseminating news and information.
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