October 10, 2011
Over 500 people from across the world are in Mumbai, India attending the global forum on sanitation and hygiene.
The forum which kicked off on Sunday at Mumbai convention centre hotel has attracted participants from various sectors in countries where sanitation and hygiene are issues these days.
The participants include over 25 journalists who had a one-day workshop that focused on reporting on water, sanitation and hygiene.
The journalists were addressed by various important people including Amanda Marlin, the programme Manager Advocacy and communication at Water Supply Collaborative Council (WSSCC)
In her address, Amanda urged the journalists to be advocates for “transparency and accountability.” This, she noted would compel service providers in the sanitation and hygiene sectors to provide the right services to the people.
Amanda further stressed the need for feedback mechanism in the process of reporting on WASH issues to ensure the necessary impact.
The other speaker at this journalists’ workshop was Jon Sawyer, the Director of the US-based Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.
He briefed the journalists about the West Africa reporting on water and sanitation initiative of the Pulitzer Center’s on Crisis Reporting. This initiative, as Sawyer noted, aims at improve the quality of reporting on WASH by drawing on the knowledge, skills and experience of the West African journalists while giving them a global voice.
Babatobi Babatope- the General Secretary for the West Africa Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Journalists Network also address the journalists. He noted that the network has helped WASH journalists in West Africa to overcome various challenges in reporting on WASH issues.
He encouraged the journalists to report on other sectors in their countries apart from WASH issues to ensure that their countries achieve Millennium Development Goals.
The international journalists were also introduced to Water Journalists Africa- a network of water journalists in Africa who report on water by Fredrick Mugira, the editor for the network’s site www.waterjournalistsafrica.wordpress.com
Mugira encouraged African journalists to be part of this network.
He briefed them on the pleasing achievements the network has been able to achieve in just 6 months after it was started by African journalists who report on water. Journalists from Asia expressed interests to be part of this network.
The workshop goes on till Friday.