Journalists enhanced their skills on reporting on persons with disabilities

27 journalists from different media outlets were practically trained on promoting an accurate image and enhancing the voice of persons with disabilities through media. The training was held from 23rd to 28th July 2019 in different districts namely Musanze, Gakenke, Kayonza, Gatsibo, Muhanga, Ruhango, Rubavu and Nyabihu. It was preceded by a theoretical one on 23rd July 2019.

The training was organized by Media High Council in collaboration with the National Council of the Persons with disabilities (NCPD), the National Union of Disabilities’ Organizations of Rwanda (NUDOR), the Umbrella of Organization of Persons with Disabilities in the Fight against HIV/AIDS and for Health Promotion (UPHLS) and the Association of journalists reporting on the people with disabilities (ROJAPED).

During the theoretical training, trainers explained to the participants the following topics: laws protecting the persons with disabilities, the mainstreaming of the persons with disabilities in different sectors, Issues affecting persons with disabilities, HIV/AIDS and Health promotion for PwDs.

During the practical training, journalists produced stories on challenges that persons with disabilities are still facing, achievements made by some of them and inclusive education. These stories were mainly advocating for persons with disabilities. They were published in their respective media outlets.

The evaluation and closing ceremony of this 6 day training was held on Monday 29thJuly 2019 at MHC Boardroom. Trainees said they have benefited a lot from it.  

“This training help me understand the laws protecting persons with disabilities, official terminologies which must be used for them and their rights”, Umukunzi Mediatrice from the Bridge Magazine said.

“Through the training, I’m able to report on problems encountered by persons with disabilities, raise awareness on their rights, and to educated the public about their ability when they are empowered”, Uwimana Valens from Voice of  Hope Radio added.

In his remarks, Peacemaker Mbungiramihigo, the Executive Secretary of Media High Council, requested journalists to keep advocating for PwDs by producing stories on their rights regularly.

“We are also planning to train journalists, especially TV representatives on the use of sign language in order to help the deaf and the blind access information in media”, Peacemaker said.

The Executive Secretary of NCPD, Emmanuel Ndayisaba, appreciated the training and urged it should be a continuous activity. He also requested journalists to put more efforts in producing stories on persons with disabilities.

 Ezechiel MBANANABO  

 Ag. Public Relations and Communication Officer