I have spoken an emailed to a lot of journalists over the past couple of weeks and now that the “6 months after”-stories are being published, it is starting to pay off. In my opinion, one of the biggest mistakes that international organizations make is not taking enough time to explain to journalists why thing are complicated and take a long time.
I find it absolutely astonishing that I’m the only dedicated communications officer within the whole cluster system that coordinates the response to the earthquake for the UN, NGOs and the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement. And of course, I only speak for the Shelter Cluster, meaning that the 11 other clusters have no dedicated resources for communications at all! No wonder many of them feel misunderstood.
The best piece I read over the last few days is the the front-page story of the today’s New York Times. This also proves that it pays off to have media that invest time and money. Deborah Sontag was in Haiti multiple times and spent a lot of time researching her article and talking to people. So, if you want to know what it’s like in Haiti, six months after the earthquake, read: