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WAN-IFRA Creates Gender and Media Freedom Steering Committee

Leading editors and publishers from Africa and the Middle East have been appointed to the WAN-IFRA Gender and Media Freedom Steering Committee, which will contribute to the organization's ambitious Women in News (WIN) gender and media development activities.

WIN is a four-year, multi-million Euro program conducted by WAN-IFRA in partnership with the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The program addresses the gender imbalance in media, while mobilizing the industry to collectively create an environment that supports conditions for women in media, and their organizations, to succeed.

The Committee, which met for the first time in Paris on Tuesday (15 December) includes: Jumana Ghuneimat, Chief editor of Al Ghad (Jordan); Wafa’ Abdel Rahman, Director, FILASTINIYAT, founder and chief editor of Nawa (Palestine); Nadim Ladki, Chief editor of the Daily Star (Lebanon); Fatemah Farag, Publisher, Welad el Baled (Egypt); Beata Kasale, CEO and Editor in Chief, The Voice (Botswana); Egidie Bibio Ingabire: President of the Association of Rwanda female journalists (Rwanda); Emelda L. Musonda, Sunday Mail Editor, Zambia Daily Mail (Zambia), Vincent Kahiya, Group Editor in Chief, Alpha Media Holdings (Zimbabwe); Dr. Tikhala Chibwana, former General Manager, BNL Times Group (Malawi) Honorary Member; and Larry Kilman, Secretary General of WAN-IFRA Honarary Member.

Biographies of all Committee members can be found here.

The WAN-IFRA Gender and Media Freedom Steering Committee will play an advisory role and guide the content and focus of Women in News, which aims to be peer-led and collaborative in its approach to helping media succeed in creating an environment that promotes gender equality in newsrooms and management structures.

"The Women in News program has a record of success in equipping high potential women media professionals with the skills and strategies they need to progress within their media. We realize that in order to bring about lasting change, however, we also need to engage with media organizations and the industry. The WAN-IFRA Gender and Media Freedom Steering Committee will play a vital role in this effort," said Larry Kilman, Secretary General of WAN-IFRA and an honorary member of the committee.

Women in News is active in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine (WIN MENA), Botswana, Rwanda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe (WIN Southern Africa), and Kenya, Malawi and Tanzania (WIN Central/East Africa). The initiative also engages the media industry at the global level to sensitize and promote change from within.

The Women in News Gender and Media Freedom Strategy combines WAN-IFRA’s global experience in running advocacy and development initiatives in support of media freedom and democracy with the first-hand knowledge of the impact gender-based programmes can have on media and society.