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Our Global Voices Posts

Media Dialogues: Cultivating a Conducive Tobacco-Control Environment In Cameroon

Posted on by CALEB I. AYONG, Communications Officer, Cameroonian Coalition to Counter Tobacco (C3T)


The author, Caleb Ayong
The author, Caleb Ayong

As the communications officer for the Cameroonian Coalition for Tobacco Control (C3T), I know the importance of educating journalists and guiding them to use factually accurate information from trustworthy sources. If this does not happen, they could obtain distorted information and pass it on to the public. C3T has held media dialogues with journalists for a couple of years now. Because of the opportunities these events present to build the capacity of the media to report accurately on tobacco control, we have organized three media dialogues in 2017, with more scheduled in several regions of the country in the months ahead.

Creative and direct engagement with the media can build their capacity to prevent and reduce tobacco use, so they can educate the public. C3T’s media dialogues focus on educating journalists on the evidence and impact of the science around the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control that include graphic health warning labels; comprehensive tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship prohibitions; smoke-free public environments; price increases, and prohibiting the sale of individual stick cigarettes.


A C3T Training with the Media in Bertoua, East Region of Cameroon (February, 2017)
A C3T Training with the Media in Bertoua, East Region of Cameroon (February, 2017)

As a former journalist myself, I know once journalists have the opportunity to participate in an education session and engage in dialogue with the moderators and each other they are better able to understand complex issues, such as tobacco prevention and control. A key component of each training is a discussion about Cameroon’s 2013 Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) results. The outcome is the ability to better use and understand data, present it more accurately, and deliver messages to their audiences more clearly. This is important, as reporting incorrect data or inaccurate messaging can have dire effects. After every media dialogue, I personally ensure all participants receive the GATS fact sheets and core takeaway messages.

When they first arrive at the dialogue sessions, it is easy to tell that these journalists know little about tobacco-related issues. They know at a high level that cigarettes are damaging to human health; however, after the session they have a greater understanding of a complex issue and of how it is affecting their communities and their country. Many journalists leave the sessions truly invested in reporting on this important public health issue, and report the information using reliable sources and accurate facts.

A C3T Training with the Media in Bertoua, East Region of Cameroon (February, 2017)
A C3T Training with the Media in Bertoua, East Region of Cameroon (February, 2017)

Through the media dialogues, C3T is able to provide journalists with clear information on the harms of tobacco use. The GATS fact sheets provide additional reputable evidence. Such a combination allows each journalist to write compelling, fact-based stories that will better inform the public on the dangers of tobacco use.

Since 2015, the Cameroon Global Adult Tobacco Survey has greatly helped the journalists in our country to better localize their stories and describe tobacco’s threat to our health and our economy.


The conclusions in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


The Yaoundé media dialogue – March 2017.
The Yaoundé media dialogue – March 2017.
Posted on by CALEB I. AYONG, Communications Officer, Cameroonian Coalition to Counter Tobacco (C3T)Leave a commentTags , , ,

Transforming Hypertension Treatment in Barbados

A blood pressure screening in Barbados.

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Posted on by Dr. Kenneth Connell, the Preclinical Deputy Dean and a Faculty Lecturer in Clinical Pharmacology at the University of the West Indies, Medical Sciences Cave Hill Campus in BarbadosLeave a comment

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Training cold chain mentees in solar direct drive fridges installation

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Posted on by CDC’s Global Immunization Division in collaboration with in-country partnersLeave a commentTags ,

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NEPAS 2017

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Posted on by Guest blogger: Louis Z. Cooper, MD, FAAP, Past President, American Academy of Pediatrics2 CommentsTags , , ,

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Posted on by Patrick Kachur, Chief, Malaria Branch, Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria, CDCLeave a commentTags , , , ,

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Posted on by Dr. Nancy Messonnier (CAPT, USPHS) Director for the CDC National Center for Immunization and Respiratory DiseasesLeave a commentTags , , ,

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Posted on by CAPT Stephanie Bialek, Chief, Parasitic Diseases, Division of Parasitic Disease and MalariaLeave a commentTags , , , , , ,

Preventing Local Outbreaks from Becoming Global Pandemics: FETP Enhances Capabilities to Track Diseases and Stop Them at the Source


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Posted on by David Sugerman, MD, MPH, FACEPLeave a commentTags ,

Heart Failure at Age 46?

Dotson E-80

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Posted on by Susan Montgomery, DVM, MPHLeave a commentTags , , , ,

Tick, tock, tick tock—While others sleep, what are CDC experts doing to keep America safe?

Children wait for a bus on a street in downtown Mysore, India. The CDC is carrying out a range of programs in India to ensure a healthy and safe future for kids like these. (Photo Courtesy: David Snyder CDC Foundation)

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Posted on by Kashef Ijaz, MD, MPH - Director (Acting) Division of Global Health ProtectionLeave a commentTags