A diagnostic mission, training and coaching of the team of web journalists of the ESD Center - Citizen Observer in Côte d'Ivoire was organized by the Fondation Hirondelle in Abidjan and will continue until the end of December. It is part of the project "Response to Covid-19 in Africa: Together for reliable information" funded by the European Union.
The training took place in Abidjan, from November 8 to 11, 2021. It was given by Marianne Bouchard, expert and trainer in web journalism, founder and director of Hei-Da, a non-profit organization that creates innovative projects and programs in the world of data journalism, open data and innovation. It took place in the offices of the Center for Education for Sustainable Citizenship (ESD). The objective was to support the development strategy of the Citizen Observer platform implemented by the ESD, by advising and training the 6 members of the team in charge of feeding and managing this website: journalists, editor in chief, web-editors, social media manager, graphic designer. The training focused on the use of digital social networks as communication and broadcasting tools for journalistic productions. The advice given on the use of social media was complemented by training sessions on web writing, to make articles more attractive.
Topics covered included the importance of choosing the right illustrative images, the need to understand your audience, and the creation of innovative content to encourage interaction with readers.
The members of the Citizen's Observer team were fully involved in this training session, participating in several brainstorming sessions to bring out problems and think together about solutions.
Practical and concrete exercises were carried out, such as designing catchy titles, writing articles enriched with the trainer's advice, or training in web production using the CMS (content management software) WordPress or Joomla.
Marianne Bouchard's support to the ESD Center - Citizen Observer will last until the end of 2021. While the audit and the face-to-face training session are over, several half-days of distance learning are organized between now and the end of December to continue coaching the participants and to ensure a follow-up of their work.
This coaching and training program for young journalists and bloggers of the Citizen's Monitor in Côte d'Ivoire is possible thanks to funding from the European Union (International Partnerships - INTPA) within the framework of the project "Response to Covid-19 in Africa: Together for reliable information". This project is organized in the form of a consortium, in which the Fondation Hirondelle participates and which is managed by Free Press Unlimited.