PHILIP CLEMENT, ABUJA
In it’s bid to enhance effective communication among Communications Officers in the development sector, ActionAid Nigeria organized a 3-Day workshop to improve deployment of communication approaches among it’s partners.
The workshop which is anchored under the Women’s Voice and Leadership Nigeria (WVL-N) project with funding support from Global Affairs Canada had the theme “Communication for Change” took place at Goshen Guest House, Nasarawa from the 21st-24th September 2021.
In her remarks, the Manager in charge of Women’s Rights Programme at ActionAid Nigeria, Nkechi IlochiOmekedo-Kanny said the Organization currently works with over 100 women’s organizations for the past three years.
She said ActionAid takes Interest in how these women Organization communicate to their target audience for visibility and impact.
The training therefore targets the Communication Officers who are responsible for managing Communications within their respective Organizations to equip them with the relevant skills for communicating complex development issues in a way that is reader and user friendly.
“This training will also expose particpants to techniques on how to tell their stories on the impact of their work in communities,” she added.
Also speaking, the WVL-N Communications Officer, Kehinde Omolabake Afolabi said that ActionAid believes in increasing the capacity of it’s partners which is why it is training it’s 28 lead partners.
According to her “Training Communication officers to improve capacity is important, because whatever Communications they learn here will translate into better outcomes for the Organization.
“This is why we have lined up presentations on media engagements, report writing, photography among others because the whole idea is that communication should be able to impact and result to the needed change in any society in line with the theme.
“As such, we expect that these Officers which we have just trained will have a communication strategy and also do better on social media,”
Lending his voice to the the training, Web Portal Consultant of the WVL-N Project, Adeyinka Adepoyigi whose presentation centred on Nonprofit Website design, said it was important for Organisations to have a good website that will effectively address the needs of the organization and the audience.
He further stated that “During the training, the participants learned the essential elements of nonprofit website design. The second presentation exposed the participants to effective smartphone use in their organizational tasks, especially communications.
” The participants learned how to use simple tricks on their mobile phones to record videos, take photos, and edit videos,” he added.
On the other hand, the Visual Consultant for the WVL-N Project of ActionAid, Toluwalase Bello while speaking on her presentations stated that branding and brand guidelines as well as photography speaks volumes in every communication.
She said her role was to enlighten particpants on how they should have a brand manual and also the importance of photography as “It will help in improving their visibility and make the Organization have a sustainable direction in it’s planning,”
According to Mrs. Bello, the idea is that “If Organizations communicate rightly, it will be able to have a sustainable impact on any project they are embarking on,”.
Sharing her experience on the training, one of the participants, the Communications Officer of 100 Women Lobby Group, Henrietta Ojeaga stated that Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is relevant in every Organization’s website, as well as how to engage people on social media to have a wider reach for the major point for her
“Subsequently, the knowledge gained will be deployed in my Organization especially in the area of social media which is a very powerful tool in programme planning and execution,” she added.
Another participant, George Marcus who is the Communications Officer of the Association of Women Living with HIV/AIDS in Nigeria, Kebbi State Chapter expressed optimism that his Organization’s social media presence will be enhanced as he has been equiped with the necessary skills needed to improve followership on the social media space.
He added that: “One unforgettable experience about this training is in the use of photography and using the right image to convey messages to the audience,”
In the same vein, the Communications Officer, International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) Ugboji Horsfall said that the training has enlightened him on the importance of report writing as well as the need to effectively communicate in any development programme.
Also, speaking, Egodi Blessing Igwe, Communications Officer at WomenAid Collective (WACOL) affirmed the importance of the training as it served as an avenue for networking and information sharing.
“I have been the Communications Officer of WACOL for years but I must confess that the training has widen my horizon especially in the area of social media engagements.
She appreciated ActionAid Nigeria (AAN) and Global Affairs Canada (GAC) for the opportunity to learn, while stating her commitment to deploying what she has learnt into productive use.