Connected Development, or CODE, is an Africa-wide group. They aim to give local communities the knowledge they need to hold their governments responsible for their actions. CODE recently offered a workshop to help journalists and community groups fight against threats to civic space, or our freedom to express ourselves and take part in society, in Nigeria.
This workshop took place in Calabar, the capital city of Cross River State in Nigeria. It was part of a bigger project called Digital Media and Communications for Civic Inclusion, or DMCCI for short. This project is backed by Oxfam, an international charity.
The workshop was divided into different sessions. Msen Nabo led the first session. She talked about what press freedom is, why it’s important, and how to protect it.Nabo encouraged everyone at the workshop to work together and spread awareness about the challenges faced by civic space. She reminded everyone, “the civic space is shrinking.”
The next session was led by Nkem Ibe, who focused on how to influence policy and advocate effectively. She talked about how to change policies and get the results you want.
The workshop also included an interactive session where participants discussed the factors that threaten civic space. They also worked together to create work plans, or steps they can follow to make a change.