Nation Media Group and UNICEF Kenya announce partnership to advocate for children’s rights
Organisations to work together to champion children’s rights in the media
Nairobi, 10 August 2021 - The Nation Media Group and UNICEF Kenya signed a partnership agreement today to promote children’s rights in the media. The agreement will see Nation Media Group use its digital, TV, radio and print platforms to raise awareness of critical children’s issues, beginning with COVID-19 and children, adolescent and mental health, and youth skills, employment and voice. Further issues will be explored in the second year of the partnership.
These are important issues for children and young people at this point in time. In 2020, school closures interrupted learning for over 17 million children, who missed six to nine months of formal education, with resulting learning loss – especially among younger and rural children. During COVID-19, children and adolescents have also faced increased stress and mental health issues, with a need for greater support in this often-neglected area. And the economic impact of the pandemic has reduced job opportunities for young people, highlighting the need for modern vocation skills, as well as the opportunity for youth to speak out about their issues and concerns.
Speaking at the Partnership Agreement signing, Nation Media Group CEO Stephen Gitagama emphasised the importance of the Kenyan media reporting on child rights.
“As Nation Media Group, we are committed to empowering people. This partnership with UNICEF will bolster our efforts in providing constant transformative content that is safe for children, promotes their welfare and is available in formats that are accessible, convenient and useful to all our audiences. Children are by far the majority in our population and we have a duty to ensure that they grow into responsible adults,” Mr Gitagama said
“NMG’s journalism continues to stand on the pillars of quality reporting, editorial independence and service to public interest. We are glad to have UNICEF join us on this journey,” Mr Gitagama said.
UNICEF Representative to Kenya Maniza Zaman recognised Nation Media Group’s commitment to children’s rights and highlighted the critical nature of the issues that the partnership will focus on in 2021.
“I would like to appreciate the Nation Media Group for working with UNICEF to protect and uphold children’s rights in Kenya,” she said. “As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, it is more important than ever for children’s rights to be upheld and for their voices to be heard. Children and young people have seen their rights to an education and to be healthy, as well as their desire to become productive members of society, under threat as never before. The media is a vital ally for children, with the reach, influence and responsibility to highlight these threats, provide balanced reporting, and amplify both the needs and potential solutions to children’s issues.”
UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone. For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org. For more information about COVID-19, visit www.unicef.org/coronavirus . Find out more about UNICEF’s work on the COVID-19 vaccines here, or about UNICEF’s work on immunization here.