Media Dialogue Newsletter
Bishkek, July 15, 2020
500 respiratory masks, 150 protective overalls and thermometers, 2000 gloves, 100 full-face shields and sanitizers were distributed to twelve media organisations based in Bishkek by the European Partnership for Democracy in the framework of the Media Dialogue project. The initiative to provide protective equipment to journalists came after a series of focus group meetings with editors who complained that their staff was exposed to COVID-19 while conducting their work. The equipment was provided to both private and state media when it turned out that the Government had not provided them so far with the necessary protective kit. Bishkek is an infection hub in Kyrgyzstan and there have already been deaths among journalists in the capital. In expressing thanks to the Project on social media, one of the editors said their journalists could now go with more confidence to the frontline reporting the pandemic and called on the Government to dedicate all resources to protecting medical staff.
On the 9th of July, the winners of the first call announced by ALDA as part of the Media Dialogue project held a joint online event with the Project representatives where Kaktus Media, 24.kg, TV1KG and Salam Media discussed how to cooperate in supporting freedom of expression in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic in Kyrgyzstan. Following the discussion, the Project grantees organized a TV program on “Freedom of expression on the Internet” that was broadcasted on the “Vecher trudnogo dnya” program of the TV1KG channel on the 11th of July. Dina Maslova, editor of Kaktus Media and Anna Timofeenko, manager of the 24.kg project funded by the Media Dialogue project participated as key speakers in the TV program.
Analytical and consultative work has continued on the new legislation either passed by Parliament or in drafts stages that has attracted much criticism both at home and abroad. Experts commissioned by the Project as well as its Kyrgyzstani partner, Media Policy Institute, are in the final stage of preparing a study on the latest legislation which critics say can have adverse effect on the freedom of expression in the country.
The Media Dialogue project is funded by the European Union and runs until late spring 2021. Its objective is to harness the power of the media in safeguarding conflict-free elections. We have been delivering training and capacity-building activities to help media actors supply accurate and trustworthy election-related content to the citizens of Kyrgyzstan so that they can make informed choices.
We work with print, online and broadcast media outlets as well as production houses, individual journalists, online activists and influencers. Our events serve to improve their editorial standards, upgrade their digital skills, and inject an innovative spirit into the content they produce. The project is engaging government officials, parliamentary deputies, non-governmental and civil society organisations as well as members of the Central Electoral Commission and its territorial branches in an effort to create a more conducive election environment. We collaborate with the media and civil society communities to enhance self-regulation in the media sector and make it more robust and resilient to political manipulation or restrictive measures.
Our programme includes activities to increase the economic independence of the media by providing monetisation workshops, innovative digital content generation events and innovative media start-ups initiatives. We also cooperate with Kyrgyz universities and institutions providing journalism education to boost their curricula and link them up with European counterparts through exchange programmes. All our activities are delivered by a mix of international and local trainers and consultants exploiting areas of expertise offered by each of the Consortium Partners.
For more information about the Project or current and forthcoming opportunities, please get in touch with our Communications Officer, Gulaiym Shigaibaeva at +996552201234 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or the Project Manager, Cholpon Nogoibaeva, at +996504222407 or email@example.com.
In response to the evolving COVID-19 situation, Media Dialogue has been adjusting its activities in line with WHO recommendations and national regulations of the countries involved in the project. Our priority is not to expose any beneficiaries, experts or staff to risks associated with the virus but at the same time to continue delivering the planned Action with every effort made to meet its objectives and maintain its effectiveness in the limiting and challenging circumstances.