Helping Librarians promote media literacy in Moldova

Cornelia Catarau, a librarian from Hirtopul Mare village in Moldova said: “I found out a lot of useful information about manipulation, propaganda, disinformation and the informational war. The session about how to write news and how to promote information was especially useful”.

Cornelia was one of the librarians who took part in media literacy trainings for Moldovan Librarians the week of February 15-20. IREX Europe trainers Nicoleta Fotiade and Daniela Galai (IREX Europe’s Moldova program coordinator) trained 25 librarians on issues such as; “when does information become news?”; “how to distinguish news from opinion?”; “how to check the credibility of information?”.

Nicoleta used interactive methods such as: questionnaires, simulations, role-play, presentations, brainstorming and team work in order to stimulate an exchange of opinions, experience and knowledge and to ensure the librarians’ active involvement.

Special guest investigative journalist Alina Radu, from “Ziarul de garda” newspaper shared her rich experience from a journalist’s perspective.

Svetlana Palii, a school librarian from Gura Bicului, who had attended IREX Europe’s program last year shared her experience of running media literacy exercises in her local community. This included running a “Media Corner” in her library following successfully applying to IREX Europe for a small grant to have a corner of her library equipped with online and computer equipment and newspapers and magazines. The media corners allow local citizens access to news and information while the trained librarians are able to engage with them helping improve their media literacy.

Feodosia Braga from the State Law Library, a branch of the National Library of Moldova, said this latest media literacy training was “… more than knowledge, it was spiritual therapy, as it involves not only knowledge and perpetual learning, but also great emotions, intense experience, which will feed our soul for now on. In this context we would like to thank the organizers – IREX Europe and the trainers for the good presentation and fruitful interaction, for the passionate hard work. Meanwhile we would like to encourage librarians to take advantage of all training opportunities, in order to have a more active and professional activity ”.

The training is part of the “Strengthening independent media and media literacy program” run by IREX Europe in partnership with the Novateca program which supports the development of libraries in Moldova. The overall aim of the programme is to train librarians across Moldova in Media Literacy so that they in turn can run training for their local populations whilst also helping increase access to information resulting in a better informed population – able to make better informed and independent choices.

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