In Gandhinagar during 28 to 29 September, a gender sensitivity workshop was organized for working journalists at Infocity Club and Resort, Gandhinagar, by Population First, a non-profit organization based in Mumbai. Under their project Laadli, launched in 2005 with support from UNFPA, Population First aims to influence the influencers, media, advertising and films, to promote gender equality and stop gender based violence.
The two-day workshop included sessions on Sex and Gender, Gender and Patriarchy, falling sex ratio, implementation of PCPNDT act, and many more interactive sessions with experts, including a theatre workshop by Manjul Bhardwaj, an exponent of Theatre of Relevance. The sessions and panel discussions were facilitated by gender experts like Dr. A L Sharada, Director, Population First; Ms. Srinidhi Raghavan, Gender Consultant, Population First; Dr. Gaurang Jani, associate Professor, Gujarat University; Ms. Pallavi Patel, Director, CHETNA; Dr. C D Jagani, Chief District Health Officer, Gandhinagar; Dr. Dinesh Kapadia, Director, GRC; Ms. Jyoti Garde, Consultant; Ms. Sophia Khan, Director, Safar; Ms. Rupa Mehta, Director, Doordarshan and Ms. Deepal Trivedi, Editor, Ahmedabad Mirror.
Dr. A L Sharada, director, Population First stated “The might of the pen is great. When journalists understand the gender nuances of reporting they would be leading the biggest silent revolution to change the way we perceive women, their issues, as well as how we formulate and implement our development policies and processes. They could be the voice of the multitude of the marginalised groups. Our Laadli Media and Gender workshops aim to bring about personal and professional transformation among journalists using theatre techniques. The response of the participants is heartening.”
By conducting such workshops, Laadli aims to influence opinion makers, such as journalists, to be advocates for gender equality and sensitivity. Now in its 12th year, Laadli has grown as a campaign, making its presence felt all over India. It was evident in the response elicited from the participants that gender sensitization can have a significant effect on media reportage, and is instrumental in leading to a gender-equal society.
28 participants form various media like Indian Express, Nav Gujarat Samay, Divya Bhaskar, Sandesh, Gandhinagar Samachar, Abhiyaan, Gujarat Headline Online Web Portal, were actively participated in participatory workshop.
Darshana Jamindar from Gujarat Online Web Portal, stated “Gender and Media Workshop provided them to great learning experience and a platform to share views and interaction with peers.”