Adapting our media responses and approaches
Our 2021-2024 strategic program aims to foster peaceful, inclusive, democratic and just societies through independent news media and to support spaces for dialogue between all components of society. 2022 – half way through this programme – was an intense year for Fondation Hirondelle, which had to respond to new humanitarian crises in the countries where it worked and deal with several departures from its teams. Despite these challenges, Fondation Hirondelle remained focused on its strategic objectives and is pleased that half of its projects now focus on strengthening the capacity of partner media.
In an increasingly fragile and uncertain environment, succeeding in this mission requires us to be adaptable and flexible in our media responses and approaches. We must meet the evolving information needs of populations, especially in places where civic and media spaces are shrinking. Our first allies are our media partners in the countries where we work, as well as those who support us financially and who understand that inaction is not a solution to these crises.
Key Numbers in 2022
12 media operation in
12 countries on 3 continents
11 916 hours of audio programmes
238 hours of video programmes
10 706 articles on the Web
1 315 748 users of our websites
747 290 followers on Facebook and Twitter
519 media supported
1427 people trained
Global polarization, local vulnerabilities
The year 2022 was marked by new international crises requiring a high degree of responsiveness. These included the war in Ukraine, the floods in Pakistan, and a deterioration in the political, security and humanitarian situation in the Sahel and in central Africa.
In order for us to be consistently engaged and flexible, we rely on committed teams with diverse areas of expertise, both in the field and at headquarters. The women and men who make up Fondation Hirondelle and its media programmes are our most valuable asset, but this resource is fragile. In 2022, Fondation Hirondelle saw several departures of colleagues in key positions, for various reasons, and would like to thank them for their work and commitment.
Despite the challenges posed by the deteriorating security situation in several of the countries where we operate, Fondation Hirondelle has remained focused on its core activities while launching new initiatives in Mali, Burkina Faso, and Myanmar. Unfortunately, we have been forced to give up some of our offsite training and programmes, which will result in a lower volume of activities in 2022 than in the previous year. Nonetheless, we have made every effort to develop our activities where possible.
One of our key initiatives in 2022 was the launch of an emergency response by Justice Info to support coverage of judicial initiatives against human rights violations and crimes in Ukraine. Within weeks of the war starting, this transitional justice news outlet began explaining the judicial stakes of the conflict on its website while simultaneously training Ukrainian journalists on the mechanisms of international justice. Additionally, a dozen regional media outlets received financial and technical support.
In the Central African Republic, we installed two new FM transmitters for Radio Ndeke Luka, thus consolidating broadcasting of the flagship favourite radio station of Central Africans in this unstable country. The very positive results of an audience survey conducted in the country at the end of 2022 confirmed the trust and attachment that the Central African population has for Radio Ndeke Luka.
In our countries of operation, we also conducted several research studies on misinformation and how to deal with it. These results were presented in briefings to embassies and public authorities preoccupied by misinformation and the polarization of opinions in Europe and Africa.
On an institutional level, two new members joined the Fondation Board: Marie-Jeanne Eby, who brings a wealth of experience in the humanitarian sector acquired at the ICRC, and the Editor-in Chief of Le Monde Diplomatique, Akram Belkaïd. The Board validated a new Editorial Charter with four points: independence, honesty, universality, and respecting differences and a spirit of openness.