The training brought together 40 young people in the seven regions of the country.
The objective according to the organizers “… is to build the capacities of young people with skills in Media and Information Literacy (MIL) so that they can engage ethically with information and media, by especially social media, for positive community development through peaceful and democratic public discourse. “
In addition, the training also aims to “strengthen the capacities of young Gambian leaders to research, critically assess and confidently contribute to media and information, online and offline”.
Speaking at the opening of the ceremony, the Executive Director of GYIN Gambia, Mamadou Edrisa Njie, stressed the importance of training young leaders in media literacy and information aware of their importance for the society.
“We are running this three-day program to help you understand misinformation and disinformation and also how we can tackle hate speech and fake news,” said the executive director of GYIN.
He added: “And currently in The Gambia, there is a lot of misinformation and misinformation regarding the low level of literacy and the high penetration rate of smartphones in The Gambia.
“As a result, we have been consumers of fake news in The Gambia and the so-called fake news is mostly shared and spread over the internet, especially on social media platforms which require great attention as young leaders in our communities,” Mr. Njie added. .
For his part, the executive director of the National Youth Council, Alagie Jarju, said the synergy is timely given the influence and importance of obtaining information.
Referring to the importance of media and information literacy, the senior National Youth Council official asked a rhetorical question asking: “How do you find relevant information; information which is false or which is not false? “
He said he was delighted that young leaders from across the country were represented and noted their roles in society.
He urged the trainees to take the training seriously and to judiciously share the knowledge gained through the training with their peers in their different communities.
The majority of internet users in The Gambia are believed to be young people, so it is essential for them to have good knowledge of the media and information.