Skardu (Staff Report): UNDP Pakistan held a 3-day training on responsible reporting on climate change and Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs) for journalists in Skardu, Gilgit Baltistan.
The training was organised by UNDP’s GLOF-II Project, a joint initiative with the Ministry of Climate Change and supported by Green Climate Fund. Twenty-five journalists from Gilgit, Skardu, Astore, Ghizer, Hunza, Shigar, Kharmang, Ghanche, and Nagar were trained on the catastrophic impacts of climate-induced disasters such as GLOFs, torrential rains, and floods, and how they disproportionately affect women and girls.
“Gilgit Baltistan’s topography is rich with snow-capped mountains and monumental glaciers. However, it is unfortunate that these glaciers are rapidly melting due to the escalating climate, making communities prone to high climate risk. It is most important for journalists to disseminate the right kind of information through responsible reporting.” remarked the Additional Chief Secretary of Gilgit Baltistan, Aziza Ahmed Jamali, in his opening remarks on the first day of the training.
The training entailed in-depth discussions on digital journalism ethics, storytelling, multimedia reporting, narrative journalism, creative formats, hand-held shooting techniques and journalists’ safety and security. The participants, including women journalists from Gilgit Baltistan, shared the challenges they experienced in reporting the GLOFs and floods of 2022.
Since the Project valleys are highly vulnerable to experiencing climate-induced disasters such as GLOFs, these trainings aim to equip journalists to responsibly report on the experiences of the disaster-affected communities, especially those of women and girls.
UNDP’s GLOF-II project operates in 16 valleys of Gilgit Baltistan and 8 valleys in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. It empowers communities to identify and manage risks associated with GLOFs and related impacts of climate change, strengthen public services to lower the risk of disasters related to GLOFs, and improve community preparedness and disaster response. The project also supports the development of sustainable livelihood options in project areas, with a particular focus on the participation of women in ensuring food security and livelihoods.