Hivos partners stand out on World Press Freedom Day

May 13, 2014

Hivos firmly believes that free exchange of information, space for expression, and opportunities for active citizen participation are crucial for the development of a democratic society.

Every year on May 3rd, Hivos celebrates the principles of press freedom, stands by its commitment to Alternative & Independent Media and condemns any act of censorship, surveillance or attack on media independence.

On May 5th, Hivos partners C-Libre and Radio Progreso, along with other representatives of organizations supported by Hivos over the years, participated as key speakers at an event held by UNESCO, The Netherlands Embassy in Costa Rica, the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights, and local civil society organizations.

Under the theme “Free Media strengthens the Sustainable Development Agenda Post-2015 in Central America”, speakers addressed a packed audience on the challenges of the independent press in one of the most dangerous regions for the exercise of journalism. 

Our partners around the region

Hivos Central America stimulates high quality journalism and independent news reporting by supporting some of the most well-known critical media platforms in the region. One of these is The Freedom of Expression Committee (C-Libre), an independent voice that braves an intimidating climate and large media conglomerates to promote and defend freedom of expression and the right to information.

C-Libre runs an online newspaper “Conexhion: communication to defeat the fear” that aims to be an alternative platform with a strong commitment to the defense of human rights. They keep their own news agenda, focusing on issues that normally traditional media choose not to cover or do so superficially.

Another outstanding initiative in Honduras is Radio Progreso, an educational radio station in the city of El Progreso, founded and run by the Jesuit community. Despite being one of the first media outlets shut down by the army after the 2009 coup, Radio Progresso continues to challenge censorship in Honduras, a country that ranked 129th out of 180 countries in the Reporters Without Borders press freedom index.

In Nicaragua, Hivos supports Confidencial, a weekly online magazine for investigative journalism established by Centro de Investigación de la Comunicación (CINCO). Confidencial believes in deeper quality journalism and continues covering controversial issues in “not popular” regions. Together with CINCO, they help foster well-informed public opinion in Nicaragua.

In only three years, Hivos partner Plaza Pública has paved the way to become an important news reference in Guatemala. With dynamic, independent and profound journalism they have covered topics that traditional local press has considered taboo, such as the special coverage of the Guatemala Genocide Case, the agrarian situation, drug trafficking and corruption among governments and businesses.

Hivos is proud of the alternative media and citizen journalism platforms we have supported over the years, throughout the region. They not only defy the traditional way of doing journalism, but have taken on the role of watchdog of government entities and political parties in power.