Friedensförderung durch Brücken der Verständigung
Peace Building through Bridges of Communication

The Network Media Program of the Open Society Institute (OSI-NMP), a private foundation founded by George Soros, and Medienhilfe, a Swiss-based non-government organization working on media development in South-Eastern Europe for more than ten years, have agreed on a common program for Roma media assistance and networking, co-financed by OSI-NMP and the Swiss Foreign Ministry.
In order to strengthen Roma community outlets the program aims to assist key Roma community broadcasters (Radio and TV) as well as news agencies and press centers in Central and South-Eastern Europe. Assistance will include program development, training and infrastructure, program exchange and co-operation among Roma radio and TV stations, news agencies and press centers. The assistance also strives to improve the relations and co-operation between Roma and mainstream media.

OSI-NMP and Medienhilfe stress their commitment to support Roma media in general, but focus their attention on those broadcasters and outlets that provide Roma communities with local news, information and quality education programs. Particular emphasis will be placed on media that actively involve the Roma community in this process, strengthening their identity and civic representation. Networking of strong local community broadcasters is seen as the most sustainable and effective way to address the information needs of the Roma communities.
For Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Macedonia, Romania, Serbia and Montenegro/ Kosovo, Slovakia, Slovenia and Ukraine, bilateral grants with Roma media partners will be signed in the coming weeks. The first meeting bringing all partners together is scheduled for September 24-27,2003, in Ohrid/ Macedonia.

With the program contract signed for the period May 2003 -April 2005, OSI-NMP, thereby, hands over the handling of the management of Roma media assistance to Medienhilfe, who will be in charge of operating the common program. Together, the two organizations make available the sum of some US$ 600,000 for the two years. The program, however, is open to new donors who arc interested in joining the common efforts, and in expanding the countries and the fields of assistance covered.

The Rrommedia. net-Project will be co-coordinated by Medienhilfe. The Medienhilfe person in charge, Mr. Peter Kasser, has been working previously with an OSI-financed Roma education
project in Slovakia. A special website will be made available at www. rrommedia. net by autumn 2003, providing contacts and information for the Roma media exchange.

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source: medienhilfe
published by: Roland Brunner date of release on this site: 


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