Association of Media Women in Kenya (AMWIK), Nairobi, Kenya
|Association of Media Women in Kenya (AMWIK), Nairobi, Kenya|
|Street address:||P.O Box 10327 -00100|
|Location coordinates:||1° 15' 52" S, 36° 47' 46" E|
|Executive Director:||Jane Thuo|
|Target:||Girls and Women|
|Organization type:||National NGO (operating countrywide or advocating at the national level), Women's network (network/coalition of people or organizations)|
|Sectors:||Arts, Child Marriage, Empowerment, Gender Discrimination, Information Communication Technology (ICT), Media/Journalism, Violence Against Women|
The Association of Media Women in Kenya (AMWIK) is a national media association that uses media as a tool to advance issues that affect women.
The Association of Media Women in Kenya ( AMWIK ) is a national media Association established in 1983 and registered under the Societies Act as a non-profit membership organisation for women journalists from the print, electronic media and other areas of communication.
The Association was founded prior to the United Nation’s Third World Women's Conference held in Nairobi in 1985 by women in middle and senior management levels in the media. Its membership comprises employees of various media houses, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and other institutions as well as independent content producers.
The Association’s primary focus is women, and it uses the media as a tool to advance issues that affect them. The Association recognizes that gender inequality and inequity undermines the effectiveness of development. It also recognizes that media is a powerful tool for social change and agenda setting.
AMWIK's challenge however remains to ensure that media outlets positively package and widely disseminate information on issues of concern to enable communities make informed choices. Consequently, it harnesses the competencies of her more than 400 members to give gender issues visibility in society.
AMWIK brings together women communicators from the private and public sectors of Kenya to pool their professional skills in giving more visibilty to women's concerns, as well as to use networking to foster collaboration with other sectors of society around issues of Human Rights, Democracy, Governance, Gender Based Violence, and equal representation of women in leadership positions and development.
The Association maintains favorable relations with journalists in both the electronic and print media, who are very supportive in the implementation of projects undertaken by the Association. AMWIK is committed to promoting the right to and use of information to create a society that has equitable access to opportunities.
Capacity Building for Membership: The Association offers various trainings and programmes for members, including sponsorship for higher education through a revolving scholarship fund. Members are also involved in programme implementation in various capacities from radio producers, editors, writers, designers while capacity building is on-going on areas such as training in information technology and use of social media.
The Association also engages media managers to provide conductive working environment for women in media.
Supporting Media Growth and Capacity: AMWIK facilitates programmes that build media practitioners’ knowledge on crucial issues, including leadership and governance, peace and reconciliation, sexual and gender-based violence, child abuse and sexual exploitation, and children’s and women’s human rights
AMWIK organises conferences and workshops for members, journalists and editors to build awareness and knowledge around topical social issues and ensure gender dimensions are taken into consideration.
AMWIK also organises media field trips for journalists to enable them to write authoritatively and produce human interest stories on key social issues that would normally go unreported.
The Association produces its own reports and feature articles that are offered for sale to the media for publication as well as radio programmes for broadcasting on national radio.
AMWIK organises live radio and TV talk shows on women issues for general public awareness.
The Association has conducted trainings for several organisations on effective media relations. It is a point of contact for many international journalists, media organisations and NGOs looking for contacts in Kenya and networks with many media organisations in the region.
Community Radio Listening Groups: Use of community radio listening groups is a key strategy in awareness creation and sensitisation of communities for social change and transformation. This strategy entails pre-recording of information, availing radio handsets to community groups and training the groups on group listening facilitation and media relations.
This concept attempts to localise media to address the needs of communities and encourages participation and debates as well as encourages the communities to come up with specific action plans to address issues raised in the discussions.
The information is also packaged in local languages. AMWIK has paid special attention to women groups from marginalised pastoral communities especially those from North Eastern province of Kenya where infrastructural development is poor, including access to media. AMWIK has been able to reach community members in 15 districts from all the provinces in the country.
Advocating for Freedom of Media and Freedom of Expression: AMWIK participates in advocacy efforts to defend and expand media freedoms. AMWIK is actively contributing to current efforts towards creation of a regulatory framework for the media including negotiations for suitable legislation and policy such as the Media Act 2007 and Kenya Communication Act 2008 and is currently partnering with other like-minded organisations to lobby for the Freedom of Information Bill.
Media Monitoring and Communication Research: AMWIK conducts research on women and children issues, including monitoring media coverage of issues affecting women and children.
The association also undertakes knowledge, attitude and practice surveys to gauge awareness of communities on issues such as women’s human rights and child labour in order to record trends and propose communication and media based interventions.