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To improve the access of the young populations in the Sahel to reliable, gender-sensitive information focusing on their concerns in relation to COVID-19, so that they can have a better understanding of how they can play a part in combating this pandemic.
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Having first appeared at the end of 2019 in Wuhan, China, COVID-19 rapidly spread to all four corners of the world during the first quarter of 2020. Africa was not spared, either by the pandemic itself, or by the information chaos that this health crisis is causing. Having been overrun by a flood of information of varying quality, the peoples of the Sahel and young people in particular, sometimes find it difficult to distinguish what is true from what is false and to identify what is useful and what is superfluous.
Information from professional sources is, however, vital in order to keep track of the pandemic, to relay health advice and details of the measures taken by governments, to analyse the data and also to track any fake news. People also need hope (positive initiatives, solutions) and amusement in order to escape those aspects of the crisis that provoke anxiety and to make sure that they comply more closely with the various awareness-raising messages they receive.
MediaSahel COVID-19 supports the production and broadcasting of reliable and quality content on the coronavirus, by adapting media content already produced through the MediaSahel project and by offering new information and content to increase awareness.
The organisation benefits from additional funding from the French Development Agency (AFD) as part of the French "COVID-19 – Health in Common" initiative.
Citizens of the six countries of the Greater Sahel and marginalised youth in particular
Journalists (radio, web), bloggers, influencers, young CSO representatives
1.Production and broadcasting of content on a national level
- In Burkina Faso,
36 special programmes on coronavirus, produced by the Union nationale de l'audiovisuel libre du Faso (UNALFA), are broadcast by some 60 private and public radio stations covering the entire country (in French and in local languages: Moore, Dyula, Fula and Gourmanché).
- In Mali,
12 synchronised radio programmes about coronavirus that have been produced by the Union des radios et télévisions libres du Mali (URTEL) in five languages (French, Bambara, Fula, Songhay and Tamasheq), are broadcast by a network of 120 radio stations in the regions of Kayes, Koulikoro, Sikasso, Ségou, Mopti, Timbuktu, Gao, Kidal and the district of Bamako.
- All broadcasts are supplemented with programmes that combine cultural and psychosocial aspects, in order to help the populations to manage the stress associated with the pandemic and to support the initiatives taken by young people wishing to combat the spread of the virus through actions such as local awareness raising in individual districts or providing assistance to vulnerable people.
- Support for youth-led initiatives in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger: local awareness raising, the provision of support for vulnerable people, the production of media content, participation in radio programmes, etc. (around ten activities per country).
MediaSahel broadcasts special content on Covid-19
May 11, 2020
For several weeks, the programmes produced as part of the MediaSahel project have been adapted to the current health crisis. New content to provide information and raise awareness among the populations of the Sahel region has been developed thanks to additional support from the French Development Agency (AFD).
“Alors on dit quoi ?” [So, what do you think?]: programmes that speak to African youths about the health crisis
June 17, 2020
How are Africa's youths adapting to the pandemic? What difficulties and struggles do they face in their day-to-day lives? How do they envision the post-COVID-19 era? These are all questions that the "Alors On Dit Quoi?" programmes broadcast in the French language, and their Mandinka ("Kan Jumɛ Bɛ Yɛn?") and Fulani ("Ko mbiidon ?") counterparts, are attempting to address.
As the pressure is easing in Africa, vigilance is still required and RAES* and CFI, in partnership with 15 radio stations in six countries (Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Chad and Senegal), are providing a weekly 30-minute magazine programme discussing social affairs.
2.Production and broadcasting of content on a regional level
Conception and broadcasting of 20 humorous videos that raise awareness of coronavirus with the Burkinan press cartoonist, from the network Cartooning For Peace. Those videos, which have been translated into 13 local languages, are being distributed via social networks thanks to the help of African influencers and, several times a day, by a number of public and private television channels in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger.
Conception and broadcasting of 20 video spots by the Priorité Santé [health priority] programme produced by RFI, aimed at raising awareness of and dismantling false information associated with coronavirus. Those videos, issued under the title of “Coronaverif” and subtitled in five languages (French, Fula, Mandinka, Hausa and Swahili), are broadcast on RFI’s site and on social networks. Each subject is also explored in greater depth on air.
Production of 12 weekly programmes by RAES (African Network for Health and Citizenship Education), broadcast by the network of radio stations working in partnership with MediaSahel and the Alliance Droits et Santé, and the provision of support to local radio stations in their efforts to produce programmes about the pandemic.
Combating COVID-19 by drawing
April 28, 2020
There's nothing quite like a clever quip or a good drawing to make an impression. Damien Glez, who is offering Africa his talent to spread prevention messages as effectively as possible in order to fight effectively against COVID-19, is betting on this.
Young people, key allies in preventing COVID-19 in Burkina Faso
May 15, 2020
Jeunes Wakat (Youth Time), a radio show produced by UNALFA (Union Nationale de l'Audiovisuel Libre du Faso – National Union of Free Broadcasting of Burkina Faso) as part of the MediaSahel project, will run a series of special programmes focusing on the role of young people in containing the coronavirus.
Overcoming COVID-19: Radio stations get involved: the new special programme launched by UNALFA
June 11, 2020
The media play a crucial role when it comes to sharing information about the global coronavirus pandemic. It is with this in mind that UNALFA has set out to produce a special programme with a national focus.
COVID-19 in the Sahel: Fondation Hirondelle adapts its content to Mali and Niger
June 17, 2020
With the spread of COVID-19 in Africa, and in particular in the Sahel region, Studio Tamani and Studio Kalangou have adapted their content while continuing to pursue the same objective of ensuring that young people are able to access reliable information.
Combating COVID-19: call for initiative projects in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger
June 17, 2020
As part of the fight against coronavirus, young people in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger have launched campaigns aimed at raising awareness among other young people about the extent of the disease: whether it be donations, awareness-raising or the production of information-based content, MediaSahel is supporting their implementation.