IWPR Launches New Afghan Project

Kabul workshops kick start capacity-building programme.

IWPR Launches New Afghan Project

Kabul workshops kick start capacity-building programme.

Wednesday, 8 November, 2017

IWPR has completed its first round of trainings as part of a new Afghan project supporting investigative journalism in local media.

Some 40 journalists and editors from central and southeastern provinces of Afghanistan took part in three IWPR workshops held in Kabul in October.

Journalists and editors who had participated in IWPR training said that with the new experiences and findings gained in these workshops, can now address the challenges they are facing with.

The trainings focused on practical methods of preparing investigative reports and radio features, and participants said that they had learned new skills that would prove invaluable back home. 

“I’ve attended many journalism workshops, but I found IWPR’s the most instructive and helpful,” said Ahmed Nadim Sephar, from Azadi Radio in Balkh province, who attended the first training.

 “This workshop taught us new ways of working,” agreed another participant, Aminah Babak. “We gained useful experience through discussions with our colleagues and journalists, especially from the provinces.”

The second workshop hosted 20 journalists from other provinces including Bamiyan, Ghazni, Logar, Kapisa and Panjshir.

"We face numerous challenges in the media throughout Logar province,” said Matiullah Saroor, head of Killid Radio. “Thankfully our colleagues at IWPR can use their own experience to show us how to address and overcome most of these problems."

Asif Ghaznavi, a reporter for Salam Watandar radio in Ghazni province, added, "These three days were more instructive for us than reading dozens of books because we’ve gained useful experience that will make our work easier.”

The third workshop included journalists from Paktia, Paktika and Khost provinces.

“New study materials were used in this workshop which will certainly make our work easier,” said Paktia journalist Sahil Mangal, adding that the opportunity to network with other media professionals had been particularly useful.

Sardar Shafaq, a journalist for Kabul News in Khost province, said that he had been following IWPR’s reports and had been impressed by their accuracy and balance.

"IWPR’s proficiency in the field of investigative reporting and features has been very informative for me,” he concluded.

“It is not an easy task to write an investigative report in today's Afghanistan, where corruption and injustice are widespread,” said IWPR trainer Muneer Mehraban. “A reporter who has nothing else more than a pen and a camera to confront corrupt people must depend on his or her own honesty and courage.”

IWPR country director Noorrahman Rahmani said that 15 years of experience was behind the series of workshops.

“We try to provide our participants with essential tools during this period of time,” he said, adding that the training itself was just the beginning of a long mentoring and support process.

The project, Supporting Investigative Reporting in Local Media & Strengthening Civil Society Across Afghanistan, involves training 120 reporters across the country in investigative reporting, as well as the production of nearly 100 related stories.

This report was produced under IWPR’s Supporting Investigative Reporting in Local Media and Strengthening Civil Society across Afghanistan initiative, funded by the British Embassy Kabul.

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