Promotion of awareness creation and dissemination of information in the EAC is among the six priority areas of the 6th EAC Development Strategy, supported by GIZ. In fact, effective communication on integrational benefits is key to keep citizens updated on the impact integration has on their lives, thus gathering more support for the process. The EAC Youth Ambassadors Platform (EACYAP) is a central player in fostering meaningful youth participation in the integration agenda and raising awareness on benefits of regional integration within citizens.
On 5 December, the EAC Youth Ambassadors participated in a masterclass, supported by GIZ, on communicating the impacts of regional integration. The workshop held at the MS Training Centre for Development Cooperation (MS TCDC) in Arusha, Tanzania, equipped the ambassadors with the necessary knowledge to effectively convey and report the importance, impacts, and beneficiaries of the EAC regional integration process.
At the opening of the masterclass, GIZ Advisor for Strategic Communication, Ms Diana Mutabazi, provided an overview of the EAC and GIZ cooperation and presented 25 beneficiaries from the region and their impact stories, which were showcased during the EAC-Germany 25 years celebrations exhibition Further, she emphasised the need for collaboration between EACYAP, EAC and GIZ in strategically communicating joint efforts and successes of integration such as these in the various communication channels. “We want to tap into our networks and utilise the outreach we have, especially on social media. To resonate with East Africans, we need to put a face behind the term regional integration and its benefits.”
Communication has been a significant channel for transformation and development for the youth in the region. This was attested to by former EAC Youth Ambassadors, Raymond Maro from Tanzania and Hayanayat Jenebiy from Kenya. During his speech, Raymond Maro underscored how EACYAP has helped him throughout his career and acknowledged the role of youths in the region. “Young people are important stakeholders in regional integration,” he added. Hayanayat Jenebiy pointed out the importance of digital communication in the contemporary world and called upon the ambassadors to take advantage of this platform and its networks to share the impacts of the integration agenda.
The training covered a wide range of topics and interactive sessions to enable the ambassadors to enhance their digital storytelling and communication skills through multi-actor dialogues and collaboration approaches with partners and other audiences. The topics included developing an effective communication campaign through digital content strategies, media priming and creative thinking with several exercises.
Present at the closing of the masterclass, the MS TCDC Executive Director, Makena Mwobobia, congratulated the ambassadors for having the privilege of representing all youths across the EAC region. She noted that for change, the ambassadors must be strategically connected to the roots of EAC. She concluded by stating, “I believe, with proper utilisation of communication platforms, the Young People of EAC will change the whole of Africa.”
Find more inforamtion EAC-GIZ Cooperation here.