by Empowerhouse / Birgitte Jallov

16 women working with community radio to strengthen the voices and lives of women in their area

Fernanda Maria, Radio Liberdade, Dili, Timor Leste

Since 2016 Fernanda Maria has worked on a special programme on ‘Prevention of Violence Against Women and Girls and Gender-Based Violence’ which she tells about in the podcast. Recent research documents that 60% of women in Timor Leste have been exposed to violence in their lives. The theme is a priority in Radio Liberdade.

Fernanda Maria has worked for 12 years in Radio Liberdade, a community radio in Dili, the capital of Timer Leste. Radio Liberdade works with the ‘Fundacão Media Development Centre’ to support women’s voices in the media and the voices of other underrepresented groups. Presently Maria also provides Journalism Training on Gender Sensitive Reporting

Radio Liberdade is one of some 15 community radio stations, struggling for survival, as Fernanda tells us – but she and her station have some ideas about how to turn the stations sustainable! Despite the challenges, new stations appear, not least because the spoken word is so important in a reality with and only a 60 % literacy rate.

Read more here:…/


EMPOWERHOUSE lanuches its contribution to the 16-day campaign by sharing 16 women’s community radio stories: unfolding how each broadcaster has been seeing positive change for women and girls – working intensely to eliminate violence against women and girls.

by Empowerhouse / Birgitte Jallov

16 women working with community radio to strengthen the voices and lives of women in their area

Catherine Vhutuza, Zimbabwe

Catherine Vhutuza is a broadcaster at the Vemuganga Community Radio reporting on women’s participation in the community of Chipinge – inspired by the powerful programmes that Catherine and colleagues share on air.

Catherine tells about how Gender-based Violence – GBV as she often refers to it in the interview – is an important and intensely covered subject on the station as well as land rights, which often sees women, especially single women or widows, not getting the compensation for land that men do, when it is confiscated by the state for mining or other industrial purposes.

There is a strong involvement of community members in many different ways that reflect the interest of the Ndau community, and they ensure that members are heavily involved in the management and direction of Vemuganga Community Radio. Read more here:…/

EMPOWERHOUSE lanuches its contribution to the 16-day campaign by sharing 16 women’s community radio stories: unfolding how each broadcaster has been seeing positive change for women and girls – working intensely to eliminate violence against women and girls.

by IAWRT Cameroon


Are you a journalism student in Cameroon, male or female, year 1, 2, or 3? Are you a JMI studying in ASMAC/ESSTIC, JMC BUEA, SIANTOU or IFCPA and ICT University?  You can win a smartphone, IPAD, tablet or internet modem to facilitate your online research and studies by participating in this contest.

Write a journalistic story that can be published on a Print media, the web, TV or radio on 1 of two topics:


Upload your story (up to 100mb) including an adequate student identification badge latest Friday 10th of November 2023 by midnight to this link.

Successful contestants will be notified via your email, and or WhatsApp number.

The winner will receive motivational prizes on Friday 17th November 2023 during a Cultural Gala that will mark the end of the IAWRT Regional Conference hosted by IAWRT Cameroon chapter.

ELIGIBILITY. To be eligible to join the contest, one has to be:

  • A Cameroonian;
  • Able to speak and write and speak accurately in one of the official languages – ENGLISH or FRENCH;
  • Able to use the internet to upload their stories

TOPICS. Interested contestants are expected to submit on one or both of the following topics:


GENRES. Stories submitted for the contest should be:

  • For the print media
  • For the web (A story that can be Published on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter)
  • For a radio news report
  • Or a TV news report

PROCEDURE. Each candidate is expected to upload their stories including their student’s batch or Identity card to this form by the November 10 deadline:


  • Monday October 30 2023 : Launch of Contest
  • Friday November 10 2023: End of Submissions.
  • Tuesday 14th November 2023: Announcement of Winners of the contest on IAWRT FACEBOOK PAGE
  • Friday 17th November 2023: Prize Awards during a Cultural Gala that will mark the end of the IAWRT Regional Conference hosted by Cameroon.

October 23 to 27 are important dates for women members of the Sisterhood Community Center in South Jakarta. They had the first training called Cellphone Cinema Workshop: Sharing Skills to Women Refugees in Indonesia, in which 15 women from Afghanistan, Somalia, Eritrea, Sri Lanka and Yemen managed to produce 10 short videos.

The training was handled by the International Association of Women in Radio and Television (IAWRT) Philippines and IAWRT USA composed of Lynda Catindig-Garcia, Philippine head, Sheila Katzman, head of IAWRT USA and Jola Diones-Mamangun, Vice President of IAWRT International. 

“The seminar-workshop with Sisterhood at Jakarta, Indonesia is a testament that IAWRT reaches out to women who need to upgrade their knowledge and skills in using tech, expressive arts for positive change,” said Lynda Garcia.

“We did trauma healing on day one and that was fantastic. This was followed by Citizen Journalism with Prof. Lynda Garcia. That was fantastic. The learning and sharing in both the trauma intervention and the Journalism training was super,” said Sheila Katzman. 

Jola Diones-Mamangun facilitated the workshop on basic mobile video production from the 2nd until the 5th day of the workshop. 

It was a partnership with Sisterhood Community Center led by Nimo Adam and with the support from Kiki Febriyanti, an IAWRT member from Indonesia and Nissa Cita, head of the board of the Sisterhood.

“The training provided by Sheila, Jola and Lynda from IAWRT has opened up new opportunities for the group of participants of The Sisterhood Community Center to express their stories through video. More than that, training enhances solidarity and empathy among participants as well as between facilitators and participants. Space for women refugees to learn and express themselves should be continued, through forum like these on a more regular basis. We need more creative people in media that could engage women refugees in a meaningful way like this,” said Nissa Cita, Board Member of The Sisterhood Community Center. 

The training was successful with the support of Taiwan Foundation for Democray (TFD).

The festival encourages all persons who identify as women and are of Asian origin working anywhere in the world to apply. Feature narratives, documentaries, short fiction, animation films, student films, and experimental films are welcome. Apply on Filmfreeway:

The last date for entry is the 1st Dec 2023, and notification of selection will be by the first week of January 2024.

This is a unique opportunity to gather and share work, concerns, ideas and thoughts. The Film Festival also organises seminars, workshops, panel discussions and allied events, making it three days of intellectual stimulation and fun.

The festival organised by the India Chapter of IAWRT will take place on the 7th, 8th & 9th of March 2024 at the India International Centre, New Delhi.

The IAWRT Mentorship Program 2023 is open. Members who wish to apply as mentor or mentee should fill out the corresponding form by September 30, 2023.

Google form for mentors:

Google form for mentees:

The Court of Appeals of the Philippines ruled to dismiss the motion for reconsideration filed by the government’s lawyers in their bid to reverse the dismissal of charges against journalist and IAWRT communication officer Lady Ann Salem.

After Salem was released from jail in March 2021, the government through the Office of the Solicitor General, then under former president Rodrigo Duterte, sought the reversal of the dismissal of the charges by the trial court that set Salem free. The case was pending for two years until the Court of Appeals dismissed it in January this year. But the government’s lawyers, under the new administration of Ferdinand Marcos Jr, filed a motion for reconsideration. Salem has been hounded by this case ever since she was released from jail and this also affected her safety and security.

Meanwhile, similar fabricated charges stemming from police raids and arrests against other IAWRT members and Philippine journalists Frenchie Mae Cumpio and Anne Krueger are still pending in court. IAWRT calls for all these fabricated charges to be dropped and for the release of Cumpio, who has been in jail since February 2020.

Anupa Shrestha, former IAWRT Nepal Chapter head and international board member, was honored for her contribution to Nepali music and media by the Music Video Directors Guild of Nepal. The group gave honors and awards to various creators while celebrating its second anniversary in August 20. Minister of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Sudan Kirati joined the event honoring creators from Nepal. 

Anupa Shrestha’s award citation read as follows: 

Born in 1974 in Nagarjuna, Kathmandu, Anupa Shrestha’s name is well-known in the field of Nepali media and music videos. A graduate in Mass Communication and Journalism, you have served in radio and television for over 2 decades. Under your creative and talented leadership, many serials, television programs and various programs related to reality shows have been aired among the Nepali audience. At a time when the presence of women in the field of film and music video direction is almost zero, you have opened t he door for other women by venturing into music video direction. Having directed around 50 music videos so far, you have produced various commercial advertisements as well as awareness and informational audiovisual content. From 2015 to 2017, you served as the president of the International Association of Women in Radio and Television (IAWRT) Nepal Chapter and worked as an international board member during the same time. You have also trained in Visual Storytelling from the University of Oklahoma, USA and Media Studies in Social Change in Israel. You have been active as an executive producer for Image Television for a long time. Therefore, in recognition of the role you have played in the field of Nepali music and communication, this special awards been given on the occasion of the 2nd Annual Celebration and General Meeting and Creator Honoring Program of Music Video Directors Guild of Nepal.  

Congrats, Anupa!


It is with deep sorrow that IAWRT USA announces the passing of our longtime member, Dr. Maureen Nappi.

She recently retired as the Professor of Media Theory + CGI and as the Coordinator of the MA + MFA Programs in Media Arts, in the Media Arts Dept, Long Island University in Brooklyn.

It was Friday, June 23rd, at Noon; IAWRT USA president Sheila Dallas-Katzman was on the Safety Training call for IAWRT Afghanistan members when she received a telephone call from a total stranger.

“Is this Sheila Dallas?” She said yes.

“Do you know Maureen Nappi?”

She affirmed and asked, “What happened?”

It seemed like forever, she was anxious to learn the news, which could not be good.

He (introduced himself as Ray) had more questions to which Sheila asked, “Is Maureen alright?” (knowing damn well that she wasn’t). 

Ray said, “I am a cousin and she was visiting us for the weekend.” After dinner last night and chatting a little, Maureen told them she was not feeling so good. She retired to bed. She never woke up this morning [Friday morning].

Dr. Maureen Nappi’s work has been exhibited + published internationally at MoMA; IBM Gallery of Science and Art; Whitney Museum of American Art; Bronx Museum of the Arts; the Kitchen/NYC; Franklin Institute Science Museum, Philadelphia, PA; Hiroshima Museum of Contemporary Art; Art Futura-Virtual Reality, Barcelona; London Film Festival; ISEA; and several New York Digital Salons, ACM SIGGRAPH Art Exhibitions and CAA conferences. Her multi-screen animation commissions include the video wall (VW) exhibition for the Rose Center for Earth and Space, American Museum of Natural History; the 42 projection cube OS/ VW on-air set for CNBC’s Trade Center Wall, Art Director for HBO’s The MAX Talking HEADROOM Show, and VW animations. She taught two of our founding members who will miss her dearly.

She received her Ph.D. in the Critical Studies Area in the Department of Art and Arts Professions from New York University as an American Association of University Women (AAUW) Doctoral Fellow. Publications include “Drawing w/Digits_Painting w/Pixels: Selected Artworks of the Gesture over 50 Years,” “Lillian F. Schwartz Redux: In Movement, Color and 3D Chromostereoscopy,” “Shulamith Firestone: Cybernetics and Back to a Feminist Future,” “Indubitable Hybridity: Amy Sillman + Charles Bernstein collaborate on Pinky’s Rule.”

Dr. Nappi recently retired as the Professor of Media Theory + CGI and as the Coordinator of the MA + MFA Programs in Media Arts, in the Media Arts Dept, Long Island University in Brooklyn.

For our colleagues and founding members of IAWRT USA chapter, Dorothy and Arshiya, we know you must be impacted by this loss. We send you our warm embrace, holding you tight as death is sweet and kind to those who feel unbearable. Maureen slept. We will miss her. We wait to hear from her cousin about arrangements for the final goodbye.

by IAWRT Kenya

The African Media Convention (AMC) which first took place in Arusha, Tanzania in 2022 is now an annual event celebrated by journalists, civil societies, international partners, and other stakeholders from across Africa. The event is planned to coincide with World Press Freedom Day on May 3rd of every year. This year’s event was held in Lusaka, Zambia, from 11-13 May 2023.

IAWRT Kenya chapter head and international board treasurer Josephine Karani spoke at the event on the safety of women journalists. She expressed concerns about digital safety and security in journalism and especially during the election period.

“Safety of women journalists is a growing concern by the day. Freedom of expression is elusive, the messenger is endangered more than ever before. Every election year exposes journalists to danger from the public, politicians, and the government of the day. The messenger has turned to the hunted.”

Josephine Karani, IAWRT Kenya chapter head and IAWRT International Treasurer

During the three-day discussions, media stakeholders expressed deep concern about continued violations against freedom of the press, access to information, and the safety of journalists, despite thirty (30) years since the UN General Assembly proclaimed May 3rd as World Press Freedom Day and 75 years since the declaration of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Recalling the important role of media, the Zambian Minister of Information and Media and Chief Government Spokesperson Hon. Chushi Kasand called on the African media to provide accurate and factual information underlining “this is what will empower you to participate in the affairs of your countries and the continent at large.”

Through its communication policies, strategies and practices, the African Union supports journalists’ rights to seek, receive and impart information. It recognizes that media plays a key role in ensuring full respect of freedom of expression, in promoting the free flow of information and ideas, in assisting people to make informed decisions and in facilitating and strengthening democracy.”

Ms Wynne Musabayana, Head of Communications, Information and Communications Directorate, African Union Commission

To address these challenges, participants recommended enhanced collaboration between the African media, African Union Member States, UNESCO, internet intermediaries, and other media development partners, to mitigate the effects of violations against journalists and media workers as well as the viability of the media sector in Africa.

The role of the media within the communication and ICT sector and the growing support from media partners for Agenda 2063 has already been acknowledged by the AU-Specialised Technical Committee on Communication and Information Communications Technology. There is a call to further build the capacity of African media practitioners and the industry at large, in partnership with media development partners and Tech companies.

In her closing remarks, Dr. Rita Bissonauth, Director of UNESCO Liaison to AU and UNECA applauded the Government of Zambia and the organisers for successfully hosting the 2nd AMC.

“The discussions on important issues contributing to enhanced freedoms for the offline and online media in Africa, coupled with the challenges and opportunities identified, will be a reference for our work and future interventions in promoting further an enabling media environment on the African continent.”

Dr. Rita Bissonauth, the Director of UNESCO Liaison to AU and UNECA

The 2nd AMC was largely funded by UNESCO through its Multi donor Programme for freedom of expression and the safety of journalists and its regular programme.  

IAWRT has been included in the AMC Steering Committee to be planning and preparing for the annual event, among eight other organisations.

The 3rd AMC will take place in Accra, Ghana in May 2024.