Skip to main content

Telling WASH stories that matter

Published on: 05/12/2014

Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) are essential to daily life and overall development, but, they are often not the top priority of the media. IRC and RNTC joined hands to train journalists and communications specialists how to tell compelling stories about WASH.

For the second year in a row, IRC has collaborated with renowned journalism training centre RNTC (Radio Netherlands Training Centre) in an intensive three-week training on Multi-Media Journalism and Water.

It takes more than facts to convince people of anything they don't already believe.The course focused on telling compelling stories and on understanding the underlying issues behind continued failure in the sector. The course examined the challenges and solutions that often don't make the headlines, especially issues of WASH governance, equity and sustainability.

Journalists and communications specialists have an important role to play in raising awareness that governments, donors and civil society need to shift their efforts from building new infrastructure to creating and maintaining viable, water and sanitation services that last and reach everyone. The nine trainees who came to the Netherlands for this hands-on course left inspired and excited about using the new skills and insights they have acquired for crafting engaging and compelling stories that can open minds and change behaviors.

"I learned so much more about sanitation, the strengths and weaknesses of sanitation-related systems in developing nations in Africa for instance. All this was new to me and very informative and engaging. One of the best classes in the course was given by Jeske Verhoeven from IRC" said Yogita Tahilramani from Indonesia.

Stella Paul, from India was enthusiastic about the story ideas and resources the course helped her acquire and the skills she developed. "Overall, I have learnt new techniques to tell a WASH story, for example videos - which I never did before."