Our work becomes even more critical in moments of crisis – when vital health information is nearly as important as food, water and shelter in helping people survive and cope.
Right now we are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic amid fears that the coronavirus will take an even harsher toll on the world’s poorest and most marginalised, and as an ‘info-demic’ of rumour and mis- and dis-information about how the virus is spread, its symptoms and treatments threatens people’s health and safety.
Our work spans the globe -- to dispel rumour, to help protect people’s health with trusted information, and to inspire them to cope and survive. And it is based on research and deep understanding of audiences, created for local cultures and in local languages for maximum impact.
Our short films on handwashing and dispelling misinformation in India are helping people stay healthier and encouraging them to think before they share, as rumours spread rapidly online. LINK: https://twitter.com/bbcmediaaction/status/1255480424001871874
In Afghanistan, our team rapidly created a basement studio suitable for a physically distanced panel, and took video contributions from across the country to make sure even those in far-flung regions could ask questions of health experts and religious leaders, helping to dispel dangerous rumours and misperceptions. https://twitter.com/bbcmediaaction/status/1263505653919776779
Our teams are working under lockdown and in some of the world’s poorest and most fragile countries, producing clear, fact-based content for social media, radio and television to help millions of people around the world understand the virus and grapple with its impacts, and to help slow the spread of the disease.
We will be there for the long haul as the world rebuilds from the life-changing effects of COVID-19 – understanding that people need information they can trust to keep their families safe, and support to rebuild and recover in the longer term.
But we need your help to scale up our response.
There is enormous need to support local and national media partners, as well as NGOs and local governments, with distance training and mentoring schemes that focus on fact-checking and trusted, impartial information. And we’re also working to support local independent media at a time when they are most needed – and facing intense economic pressures as their own revenue streams collapse.
We are proud of our response so far, but as an independent charity, we can only do what we can afford to do. BBC Media Action is not funded by the BBC TV Licence Fee and none of our work would be possible without the support of our donors – governments, foundations, corporations and individuals.
Trusted and accurate information will save lives – please support us by getting involved or making a donation here.
To find out more about the work of BBC Media Action visit https://www.bbc.co.uk/mediaaction/.