The Executive Director of Penplusbyte, Mr. Jerry Sam has disclosed that nearly 5000 Ghanaian youth have been trained by Penplusbyte in the past years on Media and Information Literacy usage.
He also added that over a thousand Ghanaian citizens have been reached through online courses and a movie series they developed to assist their efforts in educating the public on Media and Information Literacy essence.
Mr. Jerry Sam made these disclosures at the Global Media and Information Literacy Week celebration organized in Tamale on Saturday, 29 October 2022. The week’s celebration which was under the theme “Nurturing Trust; A Media and Information Imperative” encompassed students from various Senior High Schools in the Northern Region, Media Persons, and youth representatives from various Non-Governmental Organizations in the region.
According to Mr. Sam, the primary motive of the Media and Information Literacy celebration is to extend the spread of knowledge on media literacy to the Ghanaian youth. He explained that the celebration concentrates majorly on the youth since they are the next generation to take control of the country’s affairs.
He stated that it is expected that information and knowledge given under the program will make the youth responsible for media and information usage.
The Global Week Celebration which is organized by Penplusbyte, DW-Akademie Ghana, and Afriyan Ghana has made steady progress in developing a media trustworthy society. With their strategic capacity-building programs for the youth and young journalists, organizers have been able to set clear expectations and monitor the progress of beneficiaries.
In an interaction with FiilaNews, Mr. Sam complained that their work as an organization to extend media information literacy nationwide is challenged by their limited capacity. However, he stated that development capacities have been developed to enable a strategic movement from urban area concentration to rural areas.
He also noted that extensions of the programs have been made to encompass persons with disability.
“We have even extended our work to touch base with persons with disability. So persons with disability are becoming beneficiaries of MIL so that they are not left behind, we want everybody to be part of it. We want media information for all” He said.
He also urged the youth to get involved in Media and Information Literacy programs that will deepen their knowledge of media usage, management, and dissemination of information via the rightful channels.
He further encouraged the youth to participate in the Media Information Literacy hub. A free online hub created by Penplusbytes to facilitate the spread of media and information literacy knowledge.
In an interview with a beneficiary of the program, Musah Fahima, she stated that the media information literacy program over the years has deepened her knowledge of media usage and the role of the youth in contributing positively towards development through the use of media.
She explained that her involvement in the MIL has aided her in facts checking, information sharing, and her individual safety online.
She, therefore, advised the youth to also make inquiries and check facts of information they see online before disseminating it.
“don’t be in a hurry to share information, confirm from credible sources, and do personal research before you begin to spread the information” She advised.