ToT programme on Digital Safety and Security of Journalists held in Dhaka
News Network, Dhaka (October 4, 2020): A three-day Training of Trainers (ToT) programme on “Digital and Physical Safety of Journalists” was held in Dhaka on September 27 -29, 2020. News Network organised the training programme with support from the Internews with a view to developing a pool of media experts in the area of digital technologies and physical security. A total of 15 mid-career journalists, including three females, representing various national and regional print and electronic media attended the 3-day residential programme held at CCDB-Hope Foundation at Savar in Dhaka.
Digital security and IT expert Ashraful Haque conducted the technical sessions on digital security which included safe use of internet and digital communications while senior journalist Goutam Mondal conducted the session on physical security.
During the programme the trainees learnt about the digital threats and risks, mitigation strategies and security best practices that can be used to improve a user’s digital hygiene and overall digital security.
As part of the best practices to protect information, news, sources and devices, participants attended the programme learnt how to protect emails and use internet safely, how to protect computer from malware and hackers and how to protect themselves from physical threats while gathering information.
The discussion also included how cookies work, what the safe internet websites are, how to remove internet browsing history, what incognito browsing is, anonymity network, effective use of pseudonyms, how to protect identity of email account user, encrypting mails and hard-drive, hiding information with VeraCrypt and creating strong passwords. The ToT programme engaged the participants in a comprehensive, multi-day distributive learning process, including mock demonstration, which will help building their knowledge and skills required to effectively train other journalists. This pool of experts will act as trainers for a two-day training event in their home region.
Internews – Bangladesh Country Representative Mainuddin Ahmed attended the inaugural programme as the guest of honour which was addressed among others by News Network Editor and CEO Shahiduzzaman and Internews – Bangladesh Programme Manager Shameem Ara Sheuli. News Network Editor Shahiduzzaman and Internews Programme Manager Shameem Ara Sheuli distributed certificates among the participants in the concluding session.
Speakers at the training programme stressed the need for increasing both digital and physical safety for journalists by equipping them with proper training and devices.
Participants, who attended the programme, were overwhelmed for the opportunity to learn and hone the new media skills and stressed the need for more such trainings to cope with the rising IT security threats. They also demanded to increase the duration of the programme.
“Unless I attend the training course I could not realise how important the subject is. I am now convinced and inspired and hope to apply the apply the knowledge in my professional works,” said Munina Munni, a senior journalist from The Financial Express.
Another participant from Chittagong also expressed his gratefulness terming the training very usefulness which he said would help immensely to face the challenges from both physical and digital threats. “I am now more confident and a different person than what I was before the training”, said Shahnewaz Riton, Bureau Chief of an upcoming TV channel –UTV.
“Training on digital security was a new learning for many of us that expanded our horizon’, said Syed Mehedi Hasan, News Editor of Daily Matabad, from Barishal adding that it was an opportunity for them to learn about the digital safety and security and the technique to protect themselves from digital threats.
DHAKA, 22 December 2019: A twelve-day long rural women human rights defenders(W/HRDs) training on women rights has ended on 15 December 2019 at Dinajpur. The objective of the training was to educate rural Women Human Rights Defenders(W/HRDs) on women’s and girls’ rights and international law standards for the protecting the W/HRDs.
In four batches, 100 male and female participants were trained up on the issues. Each batch comprising of 25 persons received a 3-days training. The defenders include mix group of local journalists, media gatekeepers (newspapers editors, executive editors and news editors), CSO representatives and religious leaders participated in the programme. Participants were given knowledge and understanding on national policies and laws, and international law standard in protecting and promoting the rights of rural women and girls who are vulnerable to human rights violation. In addition to the training is aimed at building up their capacity to protect the defenders from violence and attacks on themselves. The trainers and experts also informed them of UN resolution on defenders’ rights in defending human rights.
Participants did several groupworks on the training issues and presented those for discussion in the workshop
Additional District Magistrate Md. Shariful Islam inaugurated the training on 4th December and Superintendent of Police (SP) Mohammad Anwar Hossain attended the closing session of the training on 15 December 2019. Besides, Dinajpur Sadar Upzilla Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Md. Firuzul Islam also attended the programme.
DHAKA, 02 January 2020: In 2019, the News Network with support from the European Union successfully implemented four months long (September – December 2019) fellowship on Human Rights in two districts – Rangpur and Jashore. A total of 40 young women journalists were awarded in the fellowship programme. Upon completion of their fellowships, the journalists were awarded with certificates in a formal ceremony held at Rangpur on 17th and at Jashore on 24th December 2019.
It was the first time in Bangladesh’s media history that such a kind of fellowship for young women on ‘Human Rights Journalism’ held in both the districts. Objectives of the programme were to encourage potential women to choose journalism as their professions and build their capacities to protect women’s and girls’ rights through journalism. Government officials highly appreciated the initiative to support the female journalists. Inspiring the fellows, they said, women journalists can play a bigger and effective role to empower the women through their works.Deputy Commissioner of Rangpur Md. Asif Ahasan and Additional Deputy Commissioner (Education & ICT) of Jashore district Shammi Islam distributed certificates among the fellows as Chief Guests with the News Network Editor Shahiduzzaman in the Chair. Local media publishers, editors, senior journalists, journalists’ union leaders and human rights activists attended the function. Local media well covered the certificated giving ceremony.
Local newspapers publishers and Editors attending the ceremony said, it’s a landmark initiative to develop more female journalists. “We are ready to welcome them in the profession,” they said. Journalists’ union leaders also expressed their satisfaction. They also believe that the fellowship has both short and long-term impact in the media. It will also help achieving gender equality in journalism profession. ##
December 01, 2019: In between August – November 2019 News Network has organised, Risk Analysis and Security Planning Training for Journalists’ in four districts: Rajshahi, Nilphamari ,Lalmonirhart and Kurigram. The training includes: three, 5-daylong for local news reporters working for local and national news media and three, 2-daylong interaction meeting with local media gatekeepers, including publishers, editors, executive editors and news editors.
The activity was implemented under the ongoing three-year (2018-2020) project titled, “Supporting Human Rights Defenders Working for Women’s and Girls’ Rights in Bangladesh”, supported by the European Union. The objective of the training as well as the interaction is to give better understanding and knowledge to local journalists on risk and security issues. It also aims to protect them from violence, attack and threats for defending women’s and girls’ human rights.
November 28, 2019: One-month inhouse training of a four monthlong fellowship programme on human rights journalism has completed in Rangpur and Jashore. The objectives of the programme are to encourage journalists to choose journalism as their profession and contribute towards protection of women’s and girls’ rights. 40 young potential women has been awarded for the programme. It includes one-month in-house training and a three-month internship in the media houses., which will end in December 2019.
On 28th August 2019, Deputy Commissioner of Rangpur Md. Asif Ahasan inaugurated the Rangpur fellowship programme while Deputy Commissioner of Jashore Mohammad Shafiul Arif inaugurated the programme on September 4, 2019. The fellowship is one of the key activities of the ongoing News Network project titled, ‘Supporting Human Rights Defenders Working for Women’s and Girls’ Rights in Bangladesh’, funded by the European Union.
The First Annual Conference of Central Caucus of the “Bangladesh Human Rights Defenders’ Forum (BHRDF)” held here today at Rangpur. Delegates from different districts, including Rangpur, Kurigram, Lalmonirhat, Dinajpur, Nilphamari, Satkhira, Rajshahi and Jashore attended the conference. The day-long conference was chaired by BHRDF President Moshfeka Razzak.
In the opening session, General Secretary Habibur Rahman Milon presented the BHRDF’s Annual Report 2017. Advocate AAM Munir Chowdhury was the keynote speaker, while News Network Editor and CEO Shahiduzzaman and Udayankur Seba Sanghtha (USS) Executive Director Alauddin Ali were the guest speakers. At the end of the conference, vice-president of the forum Md. Shafiqul Haque Chhutu gave a vote of thanks to the participants. Activities of the Caucus are a part of an ongoing project titled, “Supporting Human rights Defenders Working for Women’s and Girls’ Rights in Bangladesh”. With the support from European Union, News Network in collaboration with USS has been implementing the project. The participants and delegates appreciated the arrangement and discussed on various issues including strengthening the forum, activity plan for next year (2019), fundraise, build a network with other human rights groups, journalists and media house, and relevant other stakeholders. Delegates also approved the constitution of the BHRDF.
The delegates have demanded enactment of a law to ensure safety and security of the human rights defenders to promote their activities for protecting rights of the women and girls. With a nine-member Executive Committee, the BHRDF was formed on 17 July, 2018. Among them, Moshfeka Razzak and Mr. Habibur Rahman Milon were elected President and General Secretary of the BHRDF respectively. Other office bearers are: vice president Md.Shafiqual Haque Chhutu, joint secretary Milladur Rahman Mamun, treasurer Sayeda Yesmin Rupa and the executives members are M. Kamruzzamna, Remon Rahman, Adv.Anjuman Ara Shapla and Mahbubul Islam. The BHRDF also selected the following persons as its advisers: Md.Sarwar Manik, Md. Akbar Hossain, Dr.S.M Shafiqual Islam Kanu, Md.Anisur Rahim and AKM Samiul Haq.
With support from the European Union and facilitated by the News Network, 20 young female journalists have successfully completed a four-month long fellowship on human rights journalism in Rajshahi.
Upon completion of their fellowship, the journalists were awarded with certificates in a formal ceremony on 27 November 2018.
Deputy Commissioner of Rajshahi S. M. Abdul Kader distributed certificates among the fellows as the chief guest. Ms. Laila Jasmin Banu, Programme Manager-Governance & Human Rights of Delegation of the European Union to Bangladesh was present during the function as the special guest with News Network Editor Shahiduzzaman in the Chair.
Additional Deputy Commissioner Md. Alamgir Kabir, Editor of Daily Sonali Sangbad Md. Liakat Ali, Dr. Md. Mozzamel Hossain Bokul, Associated Professor of Rajshahi University and Abul Kalam Azad, a reputed journalist of the division were also present.
The fellowship included a month long inhouse training and three months internship in Rajshahi city-based newspapers. The objectives of the fellowship were to encourage women to choose journalism as their profession and build up their capacity to protect women’s and girls’ rights.
Deputy Commissioner of Rajshahi S. M. Abdul Kader highly appreciated the initiative to support the female journalists. Inspiring the fellows in his speech, he said, women journalists can play a bigger and effective role to empower the women through their contribution, which is also an ultimate goal of the Government of Bangladesh.
During her speech as the Special Guest, Ms. Laila Jasmin Banu interacted with the fellows and inquired of their development. Expressing her satisfaction on their improvement and learning, she said, “I am going back with a good feeling and self-satisfaction.”
Publisher and editor of the Daily Sonali Sangbad Md. Liakat Ali said, “The fellowship programme is a good beginning for Rajshahi media houses. I believe it has a far-reaching impact. We are ready to welcome them in the profession.”
A number of fellows also shared their experiences to the audience. Ms. Rawnak Ara Jesmin was one of them.
“I never thought of getting such an opportunity in my entire life. It has changed me and above all it has inspired me. It has built up my skills, confidence and courage to do journalism for the people,” Jesmine said expressing her gratitude to the organiser as well as the sponsors.
Jayashree Rani Sarkar was another participant who said, “I have learnt a lot of practical things during this four months fellowship programme, which exceeded my learning experiences during four years of undergraduation in Journalism and Mass Communication in the university. It has truly inspired me to be a journalist.”
Sampa Biswas said, “Fellowship opened my door and opportunities to be a journalist. Now time has come to achieve it. It’s my dream since childhood.” Recently, she has joined the Independent TV, a popular national news TV channel as a trainee reporter.
The News Network in collaboration with Udayankur Seba Sangstha(USS) and supported by the European Union has organised regional Leadership and Management trainings in order to build capacity to run and manage caucus and to protect women’s and girls’ rights.
Three regional Leadership and Management trainings were organised between September and November, 2018. Each workshop continued for three days in Jashore, Rangpur and Nilphamari.
A total of 56 members of district level caucus (network of human rights defenders), including representative from CSOs, religious leaders and journalists were trained to build their capacity to run and manage the caucus, and to protect women’s and girls’ rights.
The trainings were arranged under the “Supporting Human Rights Defenders Working for Women and Girls’ Rights in Bangladesh” project with support from the European Union implemented in eight districts.
Nilphamari training was organised on 6-8 September 2018, where defenders from Kurigram, Lalmonirhat and Nilphamari participated. Besides, participants from Rajshahi, Satkhira and Jashore attended in Jashore training programme from 16-18 November 2018 and defenders from Dinajpur and Rangpur attended the Rangpur training from 23-25 November 2018.
External expert and project staffs conducted the training. Participants were given better understanding on the issues that includes, learning democratic process to run the caucus, quality and role of leaders and other caucus executive committee members, technique of advocacy and lobby to defend women’s and girls’ rights, conduct case studies and investigation, fund raise and networking with other groups and organisations working for human rights and relevant stakeholders.
Action for access to justice, monitoring safety of women/human rights defenders, how quickly information can be disseminated if any defender at risk and ensure the his/her safety, identify the key partners who can be part of greater network, were also the part of the lessons.
News Network with the support from European Union has organised several training programmes on professional risk analysis and security planning for news reporters and media gatekeepers, including editors, executive editors and news editors. The issue of safety for journalists is a major concern and the risks factors are likely to increase as the country approaches to a national election. Most journalists were not well aware of their safety issues and many of them took part in such trainings for the first time. Its aims were to raise understanding on risk, safety and security of journalists so they can protect themselves against violence, attack, threats and actions. Around 200 news reporters, working for local and national print and electronic media and 40 local media gatekeepers were trained under the programme. The trainings were held in Rangpur, Dinajpur, Satkhira and Jashore from September to November 2018. #JournalistsRiskAnalysisSecurityPlanning
In order to encourage women to take journalism as their profession and contribute towards protection of human rights, News Network has been implementing a four-month fellowship programme on Human Rights Journalism in Rajshahi. Additional Divisional Commissioner of Rajshahi Division Md. Aminul Islam inaugurated the programme on 5 August 2018. Twenty potential young women have been awarded the fellowship. As part of the fellowship programme, their training include one-month in-house training and three-month internship in various print and electronic media houses. The objectives of the fellowship are to encourage women to take journalism as their profession and defend women’s and girls’ rights through reporting. The fellowship is the part of an ongoing project “Supporting Human Rights Defenders Working for Women’s and Girls’ Rights in Bangladesh”, funded by European Union. #FemaleJournalistsFellowship