06 July 2015 - NW1688
Van Dyk, Ms V to ask the Minister of Communications
(a) How many copies of My District Today published by the Government Communication and Information System are distributed (i) weekly and (ii) monthly, (b) through what medium is the publication distributed, (c) in what language is the publication published, (d) is each province equally represented in the publication and (e) how is the publication monitored to ensure that it successfully reaches communities?
(a) My District Today is a weekly online newsletter published every Friday. Currently My District Today is circulated to a database of roughly 10 000 stakeholders including Academia, Civil society Organisation: NGOs, FBOs, CBOs, Business, Government Sector: National departments, Provincial government and Municipalities, Community Development Workers, Street Committees, Commercial Media: SABC ALS, Community Media: small print, radio as well as community television; Community Policing Forums, Thusong Programme Coordinating Structures, Traditional Authorities, Special Groups: Organised Youth structures, Women’s groups and those structures of people with disabilities, Rate Payers Associations, Organised Labour, Constituency Offices and Ward Committees, amongst others.
The publication aims to profile the impact of government programmes by elevating community voices and coalface stories – the editorial bias is towards profiling success stories of government’s nine priorities especially in remote and far lying communities which often do not get public attention.
The publication further serves to elevate local stories to the national platforms such as the Vuk’uzenzele newspaper, the Public Sector Magazine, internal newsletters of government departments, etc.
(b) My District Today is published on the GCIS website and cascaded via email to national, provincial and local stakeholders.
(c) The publication is currently published in English.
(d) Equal representation of all nine provinces is ensured through a rotational roster, wherein if five stories are covered in a week (one from each province) the next edition automatically covers the remaining four. Provinces are therefore equally represented in a month.
(e) In terms of monitoring, a survey was conducted in August 2014 among recipients to evaluate interest, conceive inputs and further ideas on areas of improvement. The survey made a number of recommendations which are being implemented.
Because of its nature as an online publication it is primarily intended for stakeholders and community intermediaries as opposed to individual community members who receive communication via other channels. This dissemination is done by means of a data base maintained both nationally and provincially, through the Content and Knowledge Management Assistant Directors in GCIS Provincial Offices who verify email addresses.
Provision is made for occasional print versions of the product during the GCIS provincial outreaches where it is distributed to members of the public with other government information material.
[ACTING] DIRECTOR GENERAL
MS AF MUTHAMBI, MP
MINISTER OF COMMUNICATIONS