Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala's poverty eradication mission 'Kudumbashree' is planning to enter visual media by launching an all-women television channel to bring forth issues of grassroot-level women.
As an initial step of the long-term plan, Kudumbashree has decided to impart training to selected members in all aspects of visual media including reporting, editing, script writing, camera handling and pre and post production works, Kudumbashree sources here said.
According to a top Kudumbashree official, the all-women channel by a group of women from the grassroot level will help breaking the myth that visual media is an exclusive forte of highly-educated and qualified persons. The proposed TV channel would seek to increase the presence of women in visual media, Kudumbashree Executive Director K B Valsala Kumari said.
"As of now, we cannot announce a particular date of the launch of the channel. But we are seriously considering a plan to start a channel that gives priority to the issues and initiatives of women," Valsala Kumari said.
"Though there are a number of women working in visual media, most of them are either anchors or reporters. But, the number of women holding vital posts in channels are still few. Only if women are in decision-making roles, their issues will get greater prominence in media," she said.
She said as part of plans to lay foundation for their channel dream, the mission has decided to give training in television journalism to all Community Development Societies Chairpersons under Kudumbashree and a member from each CDS.
A symposium and a residential training programme will be conducted for them soon. Those who have real aptitude in the visual media will be identified through this and they will be given special training later, Valsala Kumari said.
"A Kozhikode-based media school has been roped in for giving the volunteers training. Those who complete training will be entrusted with the responsibility of the documentation of various initiatives of Kudumbashree and local self-governance department," she said.
Valsala Kumari said at present the documentation works are given for outsourcing and if Kudumbashree volunteers can themselves do the work, it will help ease financial burden to an extent and provide a handsome income for the members.
"Besides this, the interested members can also go for the videography of weddings. It will help them getting Rs 15,000 to Rs 30,000 from each marriage," Valsala Kumari said. She said women are often depicted in a poor light in visual media these days, especially by serials and the Kudumbashree's channel will be an attempt to create a "counter space" for portraying the real women.
"A number of television programmes, especially serials, are largely portraying women in bad light. Real women are not like those being depicted in such programmes. So, our attempt is to create a counter-space in the mainstream media to break this stereotype image and showcase the strength of real women," the executive director said.