Albanian Media Institute organized a workshop for civil society organizations on Media and Information Literacy (MIL) on January 25, 2019. 15 participants attended the course, coming from civil society organizations. Trainers were Valbona Sulçe, communication expert, and Rrapo Zguri, professor of journalism. The participants focus their work on different areas, such as media and journalism development, access to public information and its use for empowerment of citizens, media outlets working as community media, youth organizations, and also legal initiatives and protection for citizens. The aim of the training was to provide CSOs with a greater knowledge and understanding of MIL definition, approaches, and trends, in a way that can be useful for the work in their own organizations.
In order to tailor do the different needs and knowledge level of participants on MIL, the training included both an introductory session to MIL, and also a more specialized session to focus on various target groups and aims of the participants in the context of MIL. The trainers focused on MIL definition, main trends, the evolution of the concept through the years, and the need to address and engage in MIL in view of the ongoing disinformation and manipulation trends.
The training proceeded with discussing with participants the different teaching methods on MIL and how to choose the right one for the target group of their work. In particular the trainers focused on ways of teaching MIL to children, methods of engaging youth, and also senior citizens. They also focused on media and diversity and in particular on community journalism, where the trainers provided an analysis on the importance of understanding media impact on creating perceptions and stereotypes of the Other, as well as ways to prevent hate speech and other related problems.
This was the first workshop for civil society organizations, engaging the trainers that followed the Training of Trainers session on October 2018. The series of workshops will continue throughout the project Media for Citizens – Citizens for Media (2018-2021), which is a EU-funded project, aiming to build the capacities of CSOs with a wide range of activities to advance media and information literacy in the Western Balkans. A group of seven SEENPM members, including Albanian Media Institute, and led by Mediacentar Sarajevo, implement the project.