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Young people use media skills to advocate for child rights

A training programme for young people about the best ways to draw attention to the Convention on the Rights of the Child through radio and social media is taking place in Pakxan district, Borikhamxay province.
The three-day event from Tuesday to Thursday this week is hosted by Lao National Radio and supported by UNICEF.
The programme also marks the 15th anniversary of Lao Youth Media (2004-2019) and the 69th Mass Media and Publishing Day on August 13.
Sixty young participants from the southern provinces of Attapeu, Xekong, Saravan and Champassak and the central provinces of Savannakhet, Khammuan, Borikhamxay, Xaysomboun and Vientiane are attending the training programme.
They are learning about the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and important aspects of nutrition.
They are also discussing media activities in their respective provinces and reviewing use of the Lao Youth Media Page, the Facebook page of youth radio.
Participants will also be given lessons in training so they can perpetuate youth radio programmes in their provinces.
They are also interviewing village authorities, parents, and children about mother and child health education and child protection from violence. They will write news items for radio and television as well as items for posting on social media.
The opening of the training programme was chaired by the Deputy Director General of the Department of Information, Culture and Tourism in Borikhamxay province, Mr Sonthong Vibounkuang; Vice President of the Lao Journalists’ Association and supervisor of the youth media project, Mr Sipha Nonglath; and Communication Specialist from UNICEF in Laos, Mr Tabongphet Phouthavong.
Mr Sonthong said “The advantage of radio and social media is that it is a low cost but effective way to relay information. Most of the young people involved in this project become professional radio and television announcers and wherever they study or work they do a very good job.”
Mr Sipha said “Launched in 2004, the Lao youth radio initiative gives Lao children and youth a voice, and the chance to help bring positive changes to rural communities.”
He thanked UNICEF for supporting the capacity building of young volunteers and radio staff in media skills. A similar programme also took place in Oudcomxay province from July 29-31, for young people working in the media in the northern provinces.


By Visith Teppalath
(Latest Update August 15, 2019)


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