By Wallace Mawire
The African Women in Media (AWiM), in partnership with the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) is set to roll out the African Environment Journalism Programme. The project is underpinned by the African Green Stimulus Programme, a new continental platform to support Africa recover sustainably from COVID-19 pandemic.
Journalists and content producers will pitch environmental stories focused on Africa. Journalists commissioned to produce stories will also have access to training. Speaking at the signing of the agreement with AWiM, the Head of Communication and Outreach for Africa in the UN Environment Programme, Mohamed Atani, said, “Engaging African media to report on the environmental challenges and opportunities in the continent in the context of supporting the implementation of the African Green Stimulus Programme is crucial to move the African environmental agenda forward for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.”
“The role of African women journalist is of paramount importance to UNEP. We are pleased to be partnering with AWiM on this innovative and exciting initiative. I call upon African Women in the media to make reporting on the environment a priority,” Atani added. Given the global conversations around the environment, this is a timely and vital project that ensures women’s voices on environmental challenges in Africa are not forgotten. The initial pilot phase will run for six months.
“We are at a critical period in our understanding and attempts to tackle important environmental issues globally. The voices of African women must not be missing in that global narrative especially in the solutions and approaches to tackling these issues,” said Dr Yemisi Akinbobola, co-founder and CEO, African Women in Media. “We are pleased that UNEP is supporting women journalists and prioritising the reporting on how environmental issues impact African women, through this programme.”
The project aims to highlight the 12 elements of the African Green Stimulus Programme:
- Element 1 – Improving Air Quality, enhancing Chemicals and Waste Management and promoting
the Circular Economy.
- Element 2 – Enhancing the Conservation of Biodiversity and Combatting the Illegal Wildlife Trade.
- Element 3 – Revitalising Eco-tourism and the Biodiversity Economy.
- Element 4 – Combating Land Degradation, Desertification and Drought.
- Element 5 – Enhancing Climate Action.
- Element 6 – Investing in the Blue Economy.
- Element 7 – Scaling up Climate Smart Agriculture and Food Security Systems.
- Element 8 – Supporting Sustainable Management of Forests.
- Element 9 – Improving Water Conservation and Use.
- Element 10 – Investing in Renewable Energy.
- Element 11 – Developing Smart Cities and Promoting Green Urbanisation.
- Element 12 – Enhancing Information, Communication and Technology (ICT).
African Women in the Media (AWiM) is a network for African women working in media industries
anywhere globally. We aim to positively impact the way media functions in relations to women, and our
vision is that one day women of African heritage will have equal representation in media industries.
Since its inception in 1972, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has been the global
authority that sets the environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the
environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an
authoritative advocate for the global environment.
UNEP’s mission is to provide leadership and encourage partnership in caring for the environment by
inspiring, informing, and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without
compromising that of future generations.
The African Green Stimulus Programme is an innovative African-led initiative that is being developed to
support the continent’s recovery response to the devastating socio-economic and environmental impacts
of the COVID-19 pandemic in a more green and sustainable manner.