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Media and Information Literacy as Agents for Social Cohesion

On 10 August, UNESCO launched its new eight-week training series, Harnessing Youth Action for Social Cohesion, for community actors working in Sri Lanka and the Maldives by organizing its first workshop on the role of media and communications in promoting social cohesion. 

More than 200 participants, including educators, policymakers, and community leaders attended the workshop, which was facilitated by UNESCO’s media focused partner, Ideosync Media Combine, and supported by the Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR) in Sri Lanka.

During the session, workshop participants discussed challenges that have arisen with increased digital media use, including limited awareness, skills, and digital literacy among youth that can make them particularly vulnerable to online harms. 

The discussion then turned to highlight the important role that education on digital, media and information literacy can play in creating awareness of new online risks, disinformation, and fake news, as well as in building and fostering trust and resilience in societies. 

The participants were then introduced to number of engaging tools and activities that promote peaceful narratives and media literacy, and which they can take to their schools and communities.

Digital media literacy is the ability to access, analyze, create, and use digital media. This includes everything – from knowing how to find credible information online to being able communicate using digital media.

Workshop participant

The next workshop of the series will focus on the role of legal literacy and rule of law in promoting social cohesion. UNESCO’s eight-week training programme, which will run from August to September 2022, will cover a variety of dimensions to building peaceful and resilient societies, including the role of gender equality, sports for development and social and emotional learning.

After the training programme, selected participants will be able to apply for small-scale funding to implement actions that build socio-emotional resilience and empower young people to drive peaceful coexistence in Sri Lanka and the Maldives. 


For more information:
Euan Mackway-Jones or Maija Lyytinen, shs.ndl@unesco.org
Himali Jinadasa, h.jinadasa@unesco.org 


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