Media Matters for Women is in a unique position to develop and implement projects that meet the needs of rural women and girls. Our decade of reliable news and information sharing has led to trust-based relationships with local community leaders, and our communication channels are in place to reach rural women and girls.
Media Matters for Women connects vulnerable rural women and girls – those beyond the reach of traditional media – with the tools to be healthy, live safely, and fully enjoy their human rights. Our podcasts, reported and produced by MMW journalists, cover many topics, including domestic violence, sexual and reproductive health rights, girls’ education, human trafficking, Covid-19 and much more. We curate an impressive archive of more than 1,000 podcasts – recorded in Krio, Limba, Mende and Temne, which are available via Soundcloud and Afripods.
MMW coordinates menstrual health training for adolescent girls at their schools. Hosted by an MMW senior journalist with the assistance of a local midwife, students learn how to sew menstrual pads while listening to MMW podcasts about menstrual health and hygiene, then a discussion follows. This training served 1,000 students in 2022.
Period Power Project
At least 60 percent of Sierra Leone’s rural population live in poverty. In response to local needs, MMW helped build a women-owned fish farming project in the Karene District, one of the poorest areas of Sierra Leone. Three fully functioning fish ponds now provide significant new sources of nutrition to address food insecurity.
Fish Farms Project
MMW has been working to increase women’s civic engagement across Sierra Leone by supporting female candidates, broadcasting voting rights information, and providing unbiased election coverage to areas that do not have access to reliable media.
Our election-focused work has increased the number of female voters and provided critical information for all voters about their voting rights and the Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment (GEWE) law of 2023. We trained more than 150 women as peacebuilding ambassadors and engaged with 24 chiefdoms across rural Sierra Leone to reinforce messages of peace during the national elections held in June 2023.
Election and peacebuilding work
Mamie and Omo is a popular podcast series that’s delivered to rural communities throughout Sierra Leone. The lively podcast portrays two fictional, female friends – voiced by two of our journalists – debating the issues of the day. The two friends learn from one another as they share crucial information for women and girls to enable them to be healthy, live safely, and fully enjoy their rights. Learn more at Mamie and Omo Booklet.
Mamie & Omo
‘Complete Women’ Documentary Film in partnership with Hanashi Films
We produced a high-quality video telling the story of two young women from Sierra Leone: Fatmata and Ajaie. We hope the podcast these young women have made and shared among their community, will show women and girls that FGM is not necessary and allow them to stand up for their right to choose
VOTO Mobile’s Missed – Call approach in partnership with Amplify Change
MMW provided the ability to track listener engagement through the VOTO Mobile system, gathering data from rural women and girls in Sierra Leone, a previously untouched population. Journalists enhanced their technical skills through training in the IVR platform, new recording devices, new social media platforms, new reporting and data collection mechanisms, and new interaction methods with their sources and audience.
2016 - 2017
Wamama Tujenge in partnership with SOFEPADI, the Oak Foundation and the Millicom Foundation
We partnered with local Congolese journalists to implement our concept in the DRC. SOFEPADI was highly satisfied with learning experience at MMW-SL and three pilot projects were undertaken by SOFEPADI between 2017 and 2019. SOFEPADI is currently testing whether its journalists can produce weekly episodes of “Wamama Tujenge” using Mobile Production Units (MPUs) in the same format and to the same quality as the original studio episodes.
All the Children Reading in partnership with USAID and Care International
We conducted a 6 week project involving 150 pupils: each week a new 13 minute podcast was distributed using either a Bluetooth transfer or via IVR covering the science lesson for that week. From this project, Bluetooth transfer of podcasts was selected as the more appropriate method of transfer. We still use this method to broadcast our podcasts to last-mile areas of Sierra Leone.