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7703: Press release - Panos and Plan International Haiti (fwd)

From: Tttnhm@aol.com

Key words:  media, children, Internet



Port-au-Prince, Haiti - 5 March 2001. PLAN INTERNATIONAL Haiti and the Panos 
Institute announced today that they have launched a web site URL - 
www.panosinst.org/radio  - to promote the participation of children in the 
mass media. The 4-lingual web site (English, French, Spanish and Haitian 
Creole) starts off with articles and features from Haiti, derived from a PLAN 
sponsored children's radio programme in North-East Haiti. Child journalists 
from other countries are invited to post their media productions as well.

The Country Director of PLAN Haiti, Bruno Oudmayer, said that the main 
purpose of the site is to facilitate the wide national and international 
dissemination of information produced by child reporters, in particular those 
from Central America and the Caribbean. Additionally, it gives them a forum 
for collaboration and exchange of opinions and information.

"We work to help children to be agents of change and fully participate in the 
development process. Children have fresh views and often hold different 
perspectives from adults. They can be experts on those issues which affect 
them directly, such as education, violence or entertainment. We believe that 
communities would benefit from adding children's own voice to the development 
debate," Bruno Oudmayer said.

The web site features press articles, photos, information on the home towns 
of child journalists, and a discussion forum. Some media materials by adult 
journalists, which relate to children's rights and their participation in 
development, have also been included.

"The web site is a communication and information tool for children and 
communities who never before had such a tool. Although the power of the media 
varies enormously from place to place, it is clear that its influence on 
human behaviour is growing. We believe that the media is a major resource to 
help social and economic development in communities," Jan Voordouw said, who 
is Panos' Regional Director for the Caribbean and Central America.

PLAN Haiti and the Panos Institute have set up this site within the scope of 
a project which aims to give voice to children, their opinions and their 
rights by promoting their effective participation in the media. At present, 
child journalists from El Salvador, Honduras, Haiti and Nicaragua 
participate. They regularly produce radio magazines which are being broadcast 
through local radio. Radio Nederland Training Centre (RNTC), based in Costa 
Rica, is another partner in this initiative.

PLAN INTERNATIONAL is an international, humanitarian, child-focused 
development organization without religious, political or governmental 
affiliation. Child sponsorship is the basic foundation of the organization. 
Its vision is of a world in which all children realize their full potential 
in societies which respect people's rights and dignities.

The Panos Institute is a non-partisan, non-profit international organization 
that works to strengthen civil society in the Caribbean and Central America, 
as well as other parts of the world, by helping grass roots journalists to 
cover under-reported and misreported issues responsibly and in depth. Its aim 
is to broaden participation of all sectors of society in public debate on 
sustainable development.

For more information contact:
- Stefanie Conrad or Jean Claude Louis, PLAN INTERNATIONAL Haiti, Impasse 
Lily No. 3, Rue Stephen, Delmas 60, Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Tel: (509) 
510-9471. E-mail: comhti@planinternational-ht.org
- Jan Voordouw, Panos Institute, Rue Malval No. 16, Turgeau, Port-au-Prince, 
Haiti. Tel: (509) 511-1460. E-mail: panos@mediacom-ht.com

_____________________________________________________________This email is 
forwarded to you as a service of the Haiti Support Group. 


The Haiti Support Group - solidarity with the Haitian people's struggle for 
justice, participatory democracy and equitable development, since 1992.