The “Citoyens Journalistes” project in Burundi was launched in Bujumbura with the initial training from 7th to 11th October 2013.
VOA reporter Nicolas Pinault traveled there to train 34 citizens from all the provinces: Bujumbura, Cibitoke, Ngosi, Rutana, Gitega, Bubanza, Bururi, Karuzi, Muramvya, Ruyigi, Muyinga, Cankuzo, Kayanza, Makamba, Mwaro. Four VOA local stringers also participated.
During the opening ceremony, Patrick Nduwimana from Bonesha FM (partner on this project) and Evode Ndayizigye (for the Information ministry) talked about their satisfaction to see this kind of initiative launched in the country.
M.Nduwimana stressed the need for citizen journalists and Bonesha FM to collaborate efficiently to gather news all across the country, especially in remote areas.
The first day was dedicated to the introduction of several journalistic concepts, e.g. the difference between information and news, how to define an angle to cover a story and different sources to collect news. The second day was dedicated to the utilization of a smartphone and interviewing skills. On the third day, participants were given 90 minutes to go to neighborhoods in Bujumbura, to gather material and write a news story. The remaining days were spent reinforcing what was learned and evaluating skills.