World Vision Nepal
article • Wednesday, June 14th 2017

Engaging community journalists to spread the word

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Confidence. Attention to detail. Pursuit for truth. An investigative eye. A moving pen.

These words can be used to describe Ayush and his work.

Inside the studio of Radio Jalpa in Nuwakot district Ayush is busy doing a recording. Today he is working on an episode about child rights.

At the young age of 17 Ayush is already following his passion for journalism.

He says, "Journalism gives a voice to the voiceless. I always admired the courage of journalists and believed it was a necessary and noble responsibility to take on."

Ayush studies in grade 11 and has been working as a community journalist for around a year after he received training supported by World Vision. On a regular day when he’s finished school work he goes around his community gathering news for a fortnightly radio programme, Jeevan Rakshya Baal Surakshya.

"Jeevan Rakshya Baal Surakshya is a platform to spread awareness of children's issues such as child marriage, child labour, and child abuse," he says. "It is also a platform to educate and engage people in the community on disaster risk reduction and community resilience."

From an early age Ayush had always been interested in journalism and he has been studying it as a major subject at school. A year ago when World Vision provided selected children like him with the opportunity to become community journalists he jumped at the chance.

Rabindra Gautam, Advocacy Manager at World Vision International Nepal, says, "Community journalists have been influential in making people in the community aware of their rights and duties. They have also sensitized policy- making bodies to reflect on community feedback and promoted accountability."

Another community journalist from Nuwakot, Ishwori, a student of grade ten, recalls, "Once I prepared an episode on the importance of nutrition and cleanliness where I collected views from children, teachers and parents. I am really proud of that one. The community people liked that episode and congratulated me."

Ishwori's parents also feel proud of her work. "My parents say that I'm giving the community a voice," she says.

Bhagwati Lama, Programme Coordinator at Radio Jalpa, says, "Children are honest and truthful. They report nothing but the truth. This is why our community journalism endeavour promotes children's voices."

With support from World Vision, the Association of Community Radio Broadcasters Nepal (ACORAB) and Community Information Network (CIN) have been supporting child-led community journalism in the earthquake-affected districts of Nuwakot, Sindhupalchowk, and Gorkha so as to empower communities in disaster management issues and ensure the accountability of humanitarian responses and rebuilding efforts.

 We dream of a future where all community journalists act as community builders and contribute to Nepal’s development.

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