Available translations: English العربيّة

Media and communications

Graphic: NHRC Nepal Chairperson interviewed by journalists


The media – both mainstream media and social media – plays a fundamental role in shaping public opinion on pressing human rights issues.

To build community awareness of human rights, to challenge negative stereotypes and to influence public debate, national human rights institutions need to be regularly in the media spotlight promoting human rights standards and explaining what they mean in real life.

The media and communications training program engages staff from APF member institutions in a discussion on how the media works, the news values that drive the selection and reporting of new stories, and the challenges that some journalists and media outlets can face when reporting on human rights issues.

The online course focuses on:

  • Working effectively with the media
  • Tools and strategies to engage journalists
  • Using social media to reach stakeholders
  • Supporting journalists in their work and promoting freedom of expression.

The face-to-face workshop provide opportunities for participants to develop and consolidate skills in conducting media interviews, responding to a media crisis, preparing a media and communication strategy and producing digital stories to share on social media.

We also convene regular discussion and skills-based workshops for members of the APF Communications Network. These meetings have been held in April 2015 (Nepal) and November 2016 (Bangladesh).


Graphic: Chairperson of Malaysia's NHRI conducting a media interview

Media Handbook for National Human Rights Institutions

The Media Handbook provides practical advice for NHRIs on engaging the media and using social media to start conversations on human rights issues.


Past programs

The APF has delivered:

  • Workshop for the Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines; February 2018
  • Workshop for the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia; April 2017
  • Blended learning course for South Asian NHRIs, February-April 2014
  • Workshop for the National Human Rights Commission of Nepal; 2-6 February 2009
  • Workshop for the Human Rights Commission of the Maldives; 30 June-4 July 2008
  • Workshop for the Jordan National Centre for Human Rights; 13-17 January 2008 (follow-up training)
  • Workshop for the Palestine Independent Commission for Human Rights; 28-30 November 2005
  • Workshop for the Jordan National Centre for Human Rights; 22-24 November 2005
  • Workshop for the New Zealand Human Rights Commission; 10-12 August 2005
  • Workshop for the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia; 14-18 March 2005

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Image credits

  1. NHRC Nepal Chairperson interviewed by journalists - National Human Rights Commission of Nepal