2008 ONE Africa Award
Development Communications (DEVCOMS) Network
DEVCOMS is a Nigerian media training and mentoring group that works with the media to improve public health. Based in the sprawling metropolis of Lagos, DEVCOMS trains and mentors journalists in public health issues and science journalism. While media may not seem an obvious player in achieving the MDGs, Akin Jimoh, DEVCOMS’ Programme Director, says information is critical for people to make well-informed decisions, especially about their health. His organization is also actively involved in advocacy efforts for free health care in Nigeria and has helped to improve both the quality and quantity of health journalism across the country.
DEVCOMS’ success is based on its long term approach to media relationships and development. Rather than running one-off training sessions, it collaborates closely with NGOs working on health issues to provide ongoing mentoring and immersion training for reporters through internships.