Context There are daily media/news reports of road traffic crashes in Nepal mostly focusing on the number of people killed or injured. Few consider the causes, impacts or preventability. Media is recognised as a major stakeholder in road safety. We aimed to engage journalists in Nepal to improve the quality of their reports.
Process We conducted three road safety reporting workshops for journalists over a period of 9 months. WHO Guidelines, translated into Nepali, were used to explore writing stories using different ‘story ideas.’ We evaluated participant response to the training using a questionnaire after the third workshop and monitoring new media reports through a closed Facebook group.
Analysis 31 participants representing 23 media outlets attended at least 2 workshops. 13/31(42%) completed the evaluation questionnaire; 10/13 (69%) found the reporting checklist and stories from other journalists inspirational; 12/13 (92%) spoke to their Editors about using the resources. Journalists working for Nepali media were more likely to respond positively than from English language outlets.
Outcomes Monitoring the Facebook group revealed that the WHO guidelines have (i) been implemented across multiple types of media (print, online, audio, photography) (ii) helped raise the profile of road safety by increasing the space allocated to the subject (iii) 15/31 (48%) participants have adopted at least one of the WHO ‘16 story ideas.’
Learning Outcomes It is possible to engage journalists to improve road safety reporting in Nepal. Participant selection for workshops should be through engagement of Editors to maximise application of learning.
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