BBC Media Action is the BBC’s international development charity. BBC Media Action is formerly known as the BBC World Service Trust, it is funded independently by external grants and voluntary contributions. The purpose of the organisation is to use media and communication to reduce poverty, improve health and support people in understanding their rights. It works in partnership with the BBC World Service and other local media and development partners in over 35 developing and transitional countries around the world.
The charity was founded in 1999 and grew out of earlier BBC initiatives, including a charity called ‘Marshall Plan of the Mind’. This was set up to encourage high standards of journalism in the Former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe in the 1990s.
In December 2011 the name was changed to BBC Media Action.
BBC Media Action support media and communication efforts that strengthen governance, improve people’s health, increase their resilience and improve humanitarian response. In order to achieve this:
They make entertaining, informative and educational TV, radio and digital programmes that attract large audiences. But making programmes is only part of the story. Our projects encourage people to discuss what they see and hear because we know discussion helps people to take the steps to make changes that can improve their lives.
They strengthen the capacity of journalists, and others working in media and communication, through training and long-term mentoring.