Special Adviser Meets Young Reporters to Discuss Media’s Role in Development Thought Sport

Gwangju, Republic of Korea (UNOSDP), July 3, 2015: As part of his visit to Gwangju, where the 2015 Summer Universiade opens today, the United Nations Special Adviser on Sport for Development and Peace Wilfried Lemke met twelve aspiring sports journalists participating in the “U-Media” Young Reporters’ Programme.

Established by the International University Sports Federation (FISU) and run at each edition of World University Games since Shenzhen 2011, the programme provides selected students and recent graduates in journalism with a specialized media training and an opportunity to get their first taste of reporting on a multi sport event.

Invited to be one of the lecturers for the Gwangju edition of the Programme, Wilfried Lemke spoke with the young journalists about the great transformative potential their stories and images carry and the important role they can play in reaching development goals.

“Media’s influence on forming public opinions is well known. This is why it is important that you understand how sport can tackle specific social issues and share this knowledge with the world”, Special Adviser said. By increasing the coverage rates of grassroots, disability and women’s sport, which all offer moving stories of personal struggle and achievement, media can have a significant positive impact on individuals and communities, and help societies advance gender equality and social inclusion.

During major sport events, which have multifold effects on host countries and their population, constructive media coverage is especially crucial for maximizing development efforts. “It is better to light one small candle than to curse the darkness”, Mr Lemke said quoting a renowned Chinese philosopher Confucius and calling the young generation of sport reporters to inspire instead of criticizing, and to strive to create a positive legacy in the society with their stories.

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