Currently there are two distinct projects running within this initiative: Women in News Central-East Africa, which has been active in Kenya, Malawi and Tanzania since 2015, and the Media Professionals Programme (MPP) active in Cambodia, Myanmar and Vietnam since 2012.
Sonny Swe, the founder of English magazine Frontier Myanmar, has been working with MPP in South East Asia for the past three years.
“I was quite happy to hear that there is a budget for the next three years, not only for me but also for others participants,” says Swe. “This programme means a lot to me and my organization because we have the opportunity to study the latest digital models as well as learn all the do’s & don’ts from our mentors, speakers at conferences and fellow participants.”
Both programmes use peer mentoring, one-on-one coaching and networking to teach financial stability, better editorial awareness and gender equality.
“Myanmar is going through a transitional period politically, economically and most importantly, when it comes to digital media,” says Swe. “(Through MPP), I get to learn about the latest digital technology, strategies and revenue models around the world.” Says Swe.
The Media Freedom and Democracy Programme aims to build strong independent media that support democratic development, hold powers to account, and promote human rights, with an emphasis on gender equality.