Media Matters for Women Sierra Leone is now ready to roll out our concept into additional regions of the country. Our plan is to expand beyond our core work of producing and distributing original podcasts using mobile phones, and to also include leadership and advocacy training as well as communication and network building with local youth and women’s community associations (CSOs).
The aim of the training we envision is to build local women’s capacity to advocate for their rights in targeted campaigns and to use enabling technologies such as free Bluetooth transfer of audio content on mobile phones to freely transfer rights-based information.
Our newest project would also build the capacity of local and national media to report more frequently on issues concerning women and girls, hold local and national government to account, and promote innovative new media approaches to extend their reach and influence.
We plan to operate in six priority districts, building on Media Matters for Women Sierra Leone’s existing team of 3 local journalists and15 Listening Centers (now located at health clinics, training centres, and support groups) and expanding operations into two new districts which have the most isolated communities in the country (Koinadugu and Kailahun).
We plan to train 45 community leaders and 75 youth/women’s advocates to deliver five local advocacy campaigns on issues prioritized by the women and girls in their communities – targeting local district health authorities, ward committees, and national ministries in Freetown. We anticipate reaching 15,000 women and girls with this rights-based information.
In addition, 250 local and national decision makers will increase their understanding of local rights based issues affecting women/girls. We also anticipate training 40 female journalists from radio, newspapers, television, and new media to increase their understanding of how we at Media Matters for Women use ‘enabling technologies’ like Bluetooth to reach the most isolated women and girls in Sierra Leone.
We believe this project will significantly enhance our work in Sierra Leone of producing and delivering information on issues of importance to rural women and girls. It builds on our many successes in promoting gender equality and the empowerment of poor, vulnerable, and marginalised women and girls living in the most remote communities in Sierra Leone.