The Centre for African Elections Media Monitoring Index (CAEMMI)   a nonprofit organization andStrengthening Transparency Accountability and Responsibility  in Ghana (STAR – Ghana)  a multi donor funding  mechanism  on Wednesday organized a collaborative  workshop on “Building  effective Media Relations  and Media Engagements  for   northern based  STAR-Ghana Elections grant partners (GPs)  in Tamale.

The workshop organized by STAR – Ghana is to strengthen the capacities of grant partners funded under their  2012 Elections Call to improve the effectiveness of their media engagement strategies,  communicate effectively on their advocacy activities and to engage the media to promote peaceful and transparent elections.

The workshop among other things equipped civil society groups with the skill to engage the media as part of their advocacy projects.

Dr. Messan Mawugbe , the Executive Director of CAEMMI , said “ In this  era of rapidly changing media and advocacy environment, there are numerous opportunities for organizations to position themselves and engage with their target audiences trough the media but  approaching the media which is a key stakeholder in this year’s election  must  be  in various frame  of interested  messages that meshes with how  they tell stories’.

He added that Creating “the total media experience and engagement across all platforms and mediums depends largely on framing  your message  to create compelling content , evaluating  the  media competition in terms of what   activity will interest the media and news worthy   in your media space  and  relations efforts”

He advised CSOs not to rely solely on journalists to create the news for them but adopt effective media engagement strategies which are a wheel on which media relations strategies strive to inform the media, engage the media and respond to the media.  “Media engagements activities makes organizations prepared and ready to jump on media opportunities” all the time.

Mr. Michael Ohene – Effah, Governance Advisor from DFID doing a presentation on Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) responds to election risks and mitigation, urged CSOs to use their platforms to objectively respond, engage and condemn activities   of political activities that have the high risk of turning the country into turmoil.

He said a lot of warning signs of violence and unrest have emerged on this year’s election political space which points towards the need for a collaborative civil society response to peaceful elections.

Participants were taken through how to develop their communication strategies, media relations planning, media engagement tools and practices as well as   identifying election risks.

The workshop in Tamale is a first session of STAR – Ghana’s media engagement series of workshop planned for stakeholders across the country.

Participants were drawn from  Action for Sustainable Development , Ahenbronoso Care Foundation , Centre for Promotion of Democratic Governance , Choice Ghana, Centre for Alternative Development, Northern Ghana Aid, Northern Sector Action on Awareness Centre, Partners in Participatory  Development , Sustainable Aid through Voluntary Establishment , Youth Alive , Youth Advocacy Rights and Opportunities, Ghana Network for Peace Building took  part in the workshop.

 

 

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SIGNED

Messan Mawugbe (PhD)

Executive Director

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