“Considering the very important role of local media in building social capital, in 2021 Polish-American Freedom Foundation introduced a new element to its program offer, namely: training for local media journalists,” explains PAFF Public Relations Specialist Przemysław Zaroń. The project is a part of the “Pro Publico Bono” program. It is based on experiences gained in competition for Bolesław Wierzbiański Award for local press funded by PAFF.
The objective of “Media Forum. Local Development” project is to facilitate professional development of local media journalists through improving their knowledge and skills through training sessions conducted by experienced local and central media journalists. So far over 150 local media journalists and publishers have participated in these training sessions.
“The workshops held under “Media Forum. Local Development” project allow the journalists to meet the most outstanding specialists. Ewa Ewart, an outstanding documentalist working for BBC for years, teaches how to write a reportage, Magdalena Rigamonti, a press and radio journalist who won numerous journalist awards teaches the art of interviewing, Andrzej Andrysiak , the publisher of Gazeta Radomszczańska conducts the workshops on investigating journalism. Other lecturers and experts involved with the project are Jacek Pawłowski, Vadim Makarenko, Michał Matus, Anna Gielewska, Łukasz Głombicki, Michał Kowalewski, Wojciech Bojanowski, and Paweł Czajkowski,” says Maciej Starczewski, President of the Media Forum Foundation which implements the project.
During the training in networking the project alumni first of all have an opportunity to improve their journalistic skills, learn about media development in Poland and in the world, and share their experiences in the area of local editorial offices.
“Interventional journalisms starts where news ends,” Ryszard Cebula explained to local journalists. He is a TVN, RMF FM and Polsat journalist with many-year experience and he conducted the workshop and discussion on interventional journalism. The participants of the training session also took part in a From A Paper To A Portal workshop on digital transformation hosted by Jarosław Śliżewski, former digital areas director at Agora Group, co-creator of Gazeta.pl and Wyborcza.pl portals.
Issues related to subscriptions to a local portal were presented by Andrzej Andrysiak, the publisher of Gazeta Radomszczańska and the President of the Local Newspapers Association. In turn, Anna Śmigulec, who has won Grand Press Award for reportage three times, shared the secrets of her unique reporter’s expertise.
And Kamil Rutkowski, the head of creation and production at Gazeta.pl video portal, lecturer at the Journalism and New Media department at Collegium Civitas, and co-owner of Bold Bets Studio, told the training participants how to prepare interesting multimedia material.
The next networking training session for “Media Forum. Local Development” project alumni is planned for autumn 2023.