The role of civil society and media in crises management in Albania

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The role of civil society and media in crises management in Albania

December 22nd, 2020

Albania has dealt with two major crises during the period between 2019 and 2020. The devastating earthquake of November 26th, 2019 caused 51 casualties and thousands of people lost their shelter. While the Covid-19 pandemic that hit the country in March 2020 has caused 1066 casualties until mid-December 2020.

Civil society and media in the country have played an important role in the management of both crises. To better understand the challenges faced and to improve for future response to similar crises the WFD in Albania commissioned a research study into the role of CSOs and media.

 The study has found that Civil Society Organizations during both crises proved to be instrumental in providing relief aid to the affected parts of population. The organization underwent a rapid process of evolution and innovation in terms of self-organizing, learning from one crisis to inform the response to the other, creating platforms to match needs and help, and employing digital tools to provide support, especially for psychological needs. These adaptations and changes in the mode of working were also driven by the lockdown and physical distancing necessities.

Meanwhile, the Albanian media has played a crucial role in providing timely information on the crisis, promoting human solidarity, mobilizing funds, and conducting awareness-raising campaigns. During the Covid-19 pandemic the access to media information was limited for those directly affected by the sickness. A major issue noticed during both crises relates to the access to public information and institutions’ transparency. It should be noted that the crises emphasized the existing issues of transparency and trust in institutions.

To learn more, please read the study “The Role of Civil Society and Media in Crises Management in Albania: The Devastating Earthquake of November 26, 2019 and Covid-19 Pandemic” in English here and Albanian here.

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