Two and a half years after launching, a technical journalism training school led by JHR journalist Prince Murhula and inspired by JHR’s approach to vocational training gets accredited to grant degrees in journalism education in Bukavu, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Says student Aristote Safari Makusudi, student at ETJ: “I am able to hold an editorial board, make diverse journalistic formats, and train my colleagues that I have left in Kalehe. After this training I will have great value in my community because everybody will know that I am a trained journalist and hold a degree.”
For JHR, this school represents long-term sustainability of impact.
In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Kivu province, more than 90% of journalists are recruited without any prior training.
Even professional journalists are often ignorant of the principles of journalism, resulting in a blatant violation of basic journalistic ethics and lack of professionalism.
This is largely due to the lack of institutions and schools.
To meet the need, Prince Murhula, founder and director of JHR’s implementing partner ‘Journalistes pour la Promotion des Droits Humains JPPDH’ in Eastern DRC, decided to set up a training school, inspired by JHR’s approach to vocational training, to bring change in the press of South Kivu.
The technical and vocational training center “Ecole Technique de Journalisme” (ETJ) was launched in Bukavu in February 2014.
The school works alongside universities and higher institutions for journalism over a term of 6 months, and focuses on the principles of rights media. Practicing journalists with university degrees in other fields are re-trained in journalism. New journalists and students also find a channel for training. And journalists get training in media management.
In 3 years, ETJ has trained about 400 students, of which 60% are currently working in the media.
In September 2016, the ETJ was approved by decree of the National Minister of Technical and Vocational Training in the DRC as an accredited technical and vocational training center.
“I consider JHR as the sponsor of the School and its main partner. This is because we could never have set up this structure without the involvement and continued support of JHR”, says Prince Murhula. “In addition, the program and the curriculum offered at ETJ is based on JHR’s rights media approach – an approach which is unique in our country.”
Julie Kangeyo, student at ETJ and journalist at “Radio Star”: “ETJ guided my steps and helped me improve my way of doing things and has helped spread the right information for the Bukavu community.”