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First HEAT Boot Camp Training For Gambian Journalists Underway

Participants for the HEAT boot camp training demonstrating first aid skills before a trainer

By Landing Ceesay

The first Hazardous Environment Awareness Training (HEAT) boot camp training for Gambian journalists is underway in Pakalinding, in the Lower River Region (LRR).

The HEAT boot camp is organised by the Gambia Press Union (GPU) for the journalists and media workers.

The aim is to equip them with skills, techniques, and awareness on measures that could be employed when exposed to or are confronted with issues of safety while reporting in a hostile environment. 

Speaking to Kerr Fatou, Muhammad S. Bah, the GPU President said the training is very important and it will help to mitigate harassment or assault of journalists/media workers.

“This is the first time we are doing such an advanced and practical training in the country. These are trainings that are usually conducted for journalists in war or hostile zones. But I think it is necessary to have it here because we have seen the trouble that journalists went through during protests or post-election violence among other things. So I believe this training is necessary for Journalists,” he told this reporter.

Journalists/media workers in the Gambia are exposed to a lot of vulnerabilities as regards safety. 

The training is involving a series of simulation exercises on safety mitigation, prevention, dealing with psychological trauma, putting out fires, basic first aid, etc.

The session that started on 14th July would end on 18th July 2022.

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