PAGED Initiative Provides Psychological Support for Journalists

Kenny Folarin, Abuja

In a bid to ensure a sound mental health for the pen professionals, PAGED Initiative in collaboration with Jela’s Development Initiatives (JDI) organized a 2 day mental health session for Journalists in Abuja.

The Programme Director, Ummi Bukar while speaking at the session stated that the mental health and wellbeing of journalists is important considering their roles as reporters who get firsthand information and the first “gate-keepers” in news reporting.

According to Bukar, psychological support is key to journalists as it will not just make them happy doing their duties but make them perform better.

Participants at the Session

“So we see first hand some of the work that journalist do and the impact on themselves and we just thought that it will be good to also give support to journalists so that they are able to do their jobs and manage it better”.

“If we have a more balanced happy journalists, it means that the quality of work is going to be better, the society and the media organizations itself, so I think we should find way to ensure that journalists have psychological support”.

She explained that the mental health session is a learning curve for them as it helps them understand what journalists are going through and what their psychosocial needs are and provide solutions to it.

“This is an important component that should not be ignored, we have carried out many advocacy with the help of the media on gender, conflict and a host of others I think it is the turn of the journalists and for us to ensure that they are better treated to have better support”.

Bukar assured that they will ensure that media organizations take mental health of journalists more seriously and provide needed support in their workspace for effective delivery.

“The next step is to ensure that media organizations take mental health of Journalists more seriously, give them needed support, we need to create sort of awareness that even for the media houses”.

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