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DW’s Local Heroes continue to shine

DW’s new English news channel was created for people all over the world who are looking for news and information that supports and inspires them to shape their communities. During the past few months, DW has searched for these local heroes, and at every point we have found and celebrated people who are doing remarkable things and making a difference.

Most recently in Ghana, DW and local broadcaster Joy News organized a “Heromobile”, which is travelling around the capital city Accra with local musicians and went looking for people who stand out, make a difference or work hard for change. DW and Joy News collected and shared their stories taking pictures of the participants and created an atmosphere of celebration.

Earlier this summer in Kenya, DW organized The Local Heroes Journalism Competition, which encouraged young journalists to create a journalism project profiling local heroes making a difference in their communities. The competition drew a lot of interest and promoted quality journalism while giving Kenyan local heroes the recognition they deserve.

0,,16795697_303,00In Pakistan last month, speaking engagements in cooperation with local broadcasting partners honored local heroes and let them tell their story. Highlights from Pakistan included Samar Minallah Khan, documentary filmmaker and women’s rights activist who helped make the practice of forced marriage in Pakistan illegal. In Bangladesh, DW has honored Infoladies, who bike hundreds of miles to bring advice and medicine to thousands in remote, impoverished villages. There are currently around 70 Infoladies working mainly with women and girls as well as with disabled and elderly people, connecting them to the rest of the community.

In an online call to action over the summer,  DW asked people from anywhere in the world to submit the story of their local hero. Facebook posts on both DW News and 12 websites from DW’s various Asia and Africa departments combined to help draw attention to the new channel and encouraged people to share interesting stories of their local heroes with DW. The campaign was received with a lot of enthusiasm by online users. The various local hero stories complied by the participating DW editorial departments generated over 1 million reactions. The language groups that showed the most interaction with online posts were Dari, English and Bengali.

DW has shown that local heroes come from everywhere and anyone who has a vision and passion can make a difference in their communities – and there are always more stories to tell.


2015-10-22 | 1:28



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DW adds a new dimension to cooperating with African media

Across Africa from Kenya to Nigeria, a new media-savvy generation is emerging along with a new demand for opportunity, development and quality journalism. By reaching out to individuals, creating new partnerships and actively encouraging media development, DW has created a foundation for success in different African markets, while at the same time giving value back.

By adding value to partnerships and cooperating with local media in different regions, DW can help improve people’s lives with information and help set examples of transparency, legitimacy and professionalism in media.

DW’s international media development organization, DW Akademie, is very active in Africa and has been for over 50 years. DW Akademie’s first international project was a radio training program in Rwanda. Their newest initiative is a recently-signed partnership with Aga Khan University Graduate School of Media and Communications (AKU-GSMC) in Nairobi, Kenya.

The university is focused on developing media professionals for the Kenyan media market. DW is there to help guide and educate them with world-class standards of journalistic practice. In return, DW will gain valuable insight into the nuances of the local media landscape. The six-year agreement centers on the development of professional education and training standards for communications experts in East Africa. Through exchanging experience, competences and ideas, both sides will benefit. DW gains visibilty in an important media market and the courses at AKU-GSMC can improve and develop with the expertise and experience provided by DW Akademie.

Kenya is one of the quickest growing media markets in Africa and there is a burgeoning interest in media education amongst young Kenyans.  The market is growing more competitive and innovative.

DW recently produced a journalism competition for young journalists in Kenya. They were asked to create a journalism project that profiled a local hero in their region. Local heroes are people who make a difference in their communities and help those around them. The competition was organized in cooperation with The Standard Group, which is the largest media company in Kenya. The competition showed how through cooperating with partners, DW can affect the lives of people in African target audiences while gaining valuable partners and a positive local image.

Nigeria is another important market for DW in Africa. DW has been expanding its presence in the region after adding two foreign correspondents last year in Lagos and recently signing a deal with Channels TV, the largest news broadcaster in Nigeria. The deal includes direct DW reports from the Frankfurt Stock Exchange produced exclusively for audiences in Nigeria. This example of coproducing and sharing technical capacity is a model for the future of how DW will provide international quality journalism to local audiences.

Programs like Focus on Africa and Crossroads Generation emphasize individuals who help to set examples and serve as role models. They provide examples that turn away from the image of the continent as only being beset by turmoil and focus on positive actions from a younger generation.

DW will succeed in African markets by working with partners, reaching people where they are, educating media professionals and promoting journalism education. These are all very positive steps with the consistent goal to improve the overall media landscape in African countries.


2015-07-24 | 1:19



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