To strengthen internal capacity while championing the cause for advocacy, the Minister of Equity, Social Justice and Empowerment has commissioned an interactive two-day media training exercise.
The training exercise, funded by the United Nations World Food Program (WFP), targeted heads of departments and communications staff who constantly interface with media and disseminate information to the public on the ministry’s varied portfolios.
“Our support to equip the Ministry of Equity with media engagement skills aligns with our commitment to institutional strengthening in social protection. This empowerment advances our shared goals of transparency and awareness and provides the Ministry with a powerful tool to communicate its policies, programs, and initiatives more clearly and persuasively. This deepens understanding of the Ministry’s critical work, enabling it to garner the support needed for vulnerable individuals and communities to receive the required assistance and attention,” noted WFP Program Policy Officer Lilia Ramjeawan.
Equity Minister Hon. Joachim welcomed the training, stating that it will further empower his many section heads to become advocates for the plight of the downtrodden and less fortunate. “This Ministry deals with disadvantaged persons, be it Welfare, Human Services, Community Development, Belfund, Transit Home, Boy Training Centre, Upton Gardens Girls Centre, SSDF, etc. At the heart of the services we offer are people. Therefore, being better sensitized and more aware of the role and functions of media as our development partners will only auger well for section heads as they seek to inform and educate the public of the many programs and policies that affect the most vulnerable.”
The interactive training exercise sought to empower officers who work with the media to anticipate reporter behavior, avoid typical pitfalls, and confidently focus on their message. They also learnt basic interviewing techniques, with participants engaging in mock radio and television interviews on subject matters related to their day-to-day functions.
Participants also learnt how to organize press conferences and draft press releases. As part of the training session, participants were taught specialized techniques on engaging with certain media platforms, including social media, and practice scenarios that simulate real-life situations.
The veteran media practitioner, presenter, and media consultant, Mr. Kirby Allain, conducted the November 14 & 15, 2023 training.