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Embassy Hosts Investigative Journalism Workshops

September 15, 2012
Lisa Bryant with journalists during the Lubumbashi workshop. (State Dept. Images)

Lisa Bryant with journalists during the Lubumbashi workshop. (State Dept. Images)

Lisa Bryant during the workshop in Kinshasa. (State Dept. Images)

Lisa Bryant during the workshop in Kinshasa. (State Dept. Images)

From September 3-14, 2012, Embassy Kinshasa hosted VOA correspondent Lisa Bryant to conduct training workshops on investigative journalism in Kinshasa and Lubumbashi.  Based out of Paris, Lisa covers France, the European Union and North Africa for Voice of America.

The trainings brought together print, radio and television journalists from the DRC’s two largest cities, as well as from the provincial towns of Fungurume, Likasi, Kasumbalesa and Kolwezi. Over the course of the three day program, participants discussed the principles of independent journalism, the practice of investigative journalism, and their responsibility to draw public attention to important social matters. They also discussed the best strategies for engaging their communities and reaching out to target audiences. Finally, the training involved a day of field work, during which time participants were given assignments and the opportunity to practice investigative journalism in their respective city.

“I reported on persons with disabilities and I am now more aware of their situation,” said participant Claude Buse, following the workshop in in Kinshasa. “There is no legal framework protecting them and I understand now that it is more urgent to fight for their rights than to give them some money simply in the streets,” he added.

In addition to the four training sessions, Lisa Bryant also met with Congolese journalism students from IFASIC (Institut Facultaire des Sciences de l’Information et de la Communication) in Kinshasa and the University of Lubumbashi.  With each group, she discussed her experience reporting in Africa and around the Arab Spring, the challenges of being a journalist today and her thoughts on the future of the profession.