Within the framework of UNESCO’s thematic action, pluralistic media institutions are facilitated, including by adoption of gender-sensitive policies and through support for strengthened community media policy and practice, while citizens, and particularly youth, are empowered through enhanced media and information literacy (MIL) competencies. Through an EU-funded project on Addressing the Infodemic on COVID-19 in conflict prone environments, UNESCO, in partnership with Africa Centre for People Institutions and Society, trained young women and men on media and information literacy to tackle disinformation in community centres, youth organizations and places of learning during the COVID-19 pandemic in Eastern Africa.
The programme sought to build competencies of young people in countries in the Eastern Africa region; Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, South Sudan, Somalia, Madagascar, Seychelles, Comoros, Eritrea, Djibouti and Ethiopia on how to tackle disinformation by: i) Identifying and selecting 300 youths and engaging with them virtually. ii) Developing and packaging capacity development tools in a language, look and feel that resonates with the youth to ensure that the messages and information shared were not only relevant but also effective in empowering the young people with skills and capabilities to effectively tackle disinformation and know how to deal with online safety.
Acepis conducted a three-part, two-day virtual training for more than 347 young women and men drawn from across youth-led organizations, youth organisations, community centres, and community based organisations from Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, Tanzania, Somalia, Seychelles, Rwanda and Malawi.