A first cohort of 60 state Public Relations officers serving in the various Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs) in the country are undergoing a five-day training to equip them with the professional structure for the practice of Public Relations and to help government in its communication efforts.
The training programme, in collaboration with the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ) and the Institute of Public Relations - Ghana (IPR) takes place from 15th to 20th August, will help the PROs gain hands-on experience in the Public Relations profession to boost government communications and to properly inform Ghanaians on government activities.
Addressing the opening of the workshop, Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah said the training is part of the Ministry of Information’s, vision of training PROs as a way of addressing the existing capacity gap among state PROs and at the same time, resourcing the various Public Relations Units of these MDAs to function properly.
“The vision is to ensure that every government office has a functioning Public Relations Unit that is well resourced with the human being, logistics and the knowledge capable of assisting that government office or that government institution to deliver on its communication obligations.
"There are about 600 government offices in the country. Not all of them have PROs let alone functioning PR Units. That is why it has been top of our agenda as a Ministry to enhance the capacities of our PROs,” the Minister said.
He said the training is important as it will enhance the capacity of PROs to build a two-way communication channel between the people and their various institutions in order to collect feedback that is useful for effective governance.
On his part, the Acting Director of the ISD, David Owusu-Amoah urged the PROs to be passionate about their job and take advantage of the opportunity to learn from the resource persons. He said the capacity building exercise has been tailor-made to equip them with relevant skills to ensure effective government communications.
The participants are expected to go through topics such as overview of the Public Relations Responsibility; Functions of the government Public Relations office; Stakeholder Engagement; PR Writing; Media Relations; Monitoring and Evaluation and Establishing Corporate Communications Policy.