Ten years of IFEX
A week has passed since the IFEX General Meeting and Strategy Conference came to a close. Enough time for all the feelings to sink in, for contacts to be sorted into address books and for photos to be uploaded.
Our Journalism Center has been a member of IFEX for ten years, making this year’s GM particularly special for us. Over the last decade we have been able to see IFEX grow as a network of freedom of expression organizations, covering the most difficult regions on the planet. We have also observed and participated firsthand in the strengthening of IFEX’s staff though our previous representation in IFEX’sgoverning body, its Council and Executive Committee. After several GMs (as time is measured at IFEX), we are again witnessing through its governing bodies the establishment of a strong structure and clear objectives for this global network.
We have benefitted ourselves from the support of IFEX when times for the media in Moldova have been more complicated than they are today; when we had to issue more declarations and alerts than have fortunately been required over the past couple of years. IFEX also contributed to the development of our Media Law Unit. This legal department acts to defend journalists in the court of law, as well as, develop new progressive laws for the media in Moldova. We believe the type of support it provides is essential for small organizations around the world when setting up freedom of expression activities.
Additionally, we have helped another fellow member organization by demonstrating how to run a non-profit in our region and to effectively plan activities. Peer to peer exchanges allow members to learn from each other, and with IFEX’s membership as diverse as the mind can imagine – from big international NGOs and trade unions to small NGOs monitoring press freedom violations and abuse of free speech only in their countries – there are plenty of opportunities.
All in all, IFEX provides indispensable exposure to violations of freedom of expression and support to member organizations. It is one network acting globally yet also serving individually the needs its members.