By Nathan Gibbons
The UNESCO – CBU Media and Information Literacy Workshop
With the kind support of UNESCO, CBU has been rolling out capacity enhancement sessions to its members in the Dutch, English, French and Spanish Caribbean. In July, eleven CBU member organisations from eight countries and territories participated in a two-day session led by Training Consultant, Dr.Saachi Jain and Project Coordinator and facilitator, Mr. Nathan Gibbons.
The twenty-three participants including CEOs, senior managers, journalists, and producers, explored fundamental concepts about Media and Information Literacy as well as how the current challenges affecting Caribbean media could be addressed through these approaches.
PMA and CBU Partner to Advance Media & Information Literacy
An engagement with media executives took place during the CBU 53rd Annual General Assembly during the Conference Day under the theme Media and Information Literacy. The address to the event was delivered virtually by UNESCO Assistant Director General, Prof. Tawfik Jelassi. The Caribbean feature speaker was CARICOM Secretary General, Dr. Carla Barnett.
The Public Media Alliance partnered with the Unions to lead an engagement with seventeen (17) CBU media executives discussing the integration of Media and Information Literacy approaches into their institutional policies. As a result, participating media executives committed to exploring ways in which these policies could be enhanced by media and information literacy strategies. These commitments will be followed up by consultant Dr. Saachi Jain, during one-on-one sessions with the CBU media execs to be scheduled for the first quarter of 2023.
New Category of Media & Information Literacy Awards
The CBU has introduced a new initiative to incentivize the production of content by Caribbean media professionals around the theme of Media and Information Literacy As the world marked Media and Information Literacy Week in October, CBU joined the celebration by inaugurating a new category in its annual Caribbean Media Awards. CBU President, Dr. Claire Grant announced the inclusion of the media and information literacy theme in the upcoming edition of the regional competition. The category will be open to entries from print, digital, television and radio media houses from around the region, including those who are not yet members of CBU.
Next Steps – MIL Policy Consultations
Dr. Saachi Jain, senior lecturer in Journalism and Documentary, from the University of Cardiff, who facilitated a 2-day UNESCO supported workshop on the subject, is set to convene consultations with CBU member media execs on implementing MIL policies over the next few months.
Ahead of those sessions, CBU will be sharing a tool for easy reference by Caribbean media professionals, developed from the engagements taking place since the launch of the project in May 2022 on World Press Freedom Day.
An invitation will be issued early in the new year to participating media houses to support them in the adoption and adaptation of the media and information literacy checklist into their in-house policies.