EU, UN Sign Agreement with Female Journalist Association

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Monrovia – The European Union (EU) in partnership with United Nations (UN) has signed a memorandum of understanding on Tuesday with the Female Journalist Association of Liberia (FeJAL) for the implementation of the media Advocacy component EU/UN Spotlight initiative.

The spotlight initiative is a new global multi-year initiative which is focused on eliminating all forms of violence against women and girls.

The project places all forms of violence against women and girls at the center of efforts to achieve gender equality and women’s empowerment in line with the 2030 Agenda for sustainable Development.

The project is being funded by the European Union and implemented by UN women.

Congratulating FeJAL for emerging as the selected entity for the activity, the Deputy Country Representative and OIC of UN Women, Sangeeta Thapa lauded the female journalists’ umbrella organization for being selected to implement one of the activities of the spotlight initiative.

“This program intervention considers the media as cardinal in reaching out to a large target group of audience in creating and shaping public opinion on the prevention and response to SGBV and harmful practices as well strengthening society and public awareness,” Madame Thapa said.

She stressed that the media has a greater role in acting against “injustice, oppression, discrimination, and all forms of violence perpetrated against a person, especially women and girls, minority groups, and marginalized and vulnerable groups.”

The UN women official stated that even though there is an influx of multimedia tools to communicate, there is still a lack of awareness and dialogue on what comprises gender-based violence, legislation frameworks in place for legal recourse among others.

“The media’s core theme should then be about speaking out, education on GBV issues and leading dialogues on coming up with solutions and ideas for prevention and care,” she stressed.

In response, the Coordinator of FeJAL, Siatta Scott-Johnson stated that the association is very appreciative to UN women for emerging as implementing partner for the media component of the spotlight initiative for the first phase of the project.

“We acknowledge that the media is a critical partner in this and without the media, the spotlight initiative wouldn’t get all the necessary publicity and awareness against all forms of gender-based violence among others,” said Johnson.

She committed to the implementation of every aspect of the task based on the proposal.

“We are committed to doing what we said in our proposal, our work plan and everything and we are excited as well that the UN women give us this opportunity to show our potential as women Journalist,” stated the FeJAL Coordinator.

FeJAL applied for the media advocacy component of the spotlight initiative and is expected to work with and train over 200 Journalists in the counties which have been earmarked for the spotlight initiative.

The spotlight counties include Montserrado, Lofa, Nimba, Grand Cape Mount, and Grand Gedeh.

FeJAL is also expected to work closely with 59 radio stations.The project is a US$60,000 and FejAL will work closely with the Liberia Media for Democratic Initiative (LMDI) and the Association of Community Radios (ALICOR) to implement the project.

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