UNHCR is seeking applications for its Community-led Online Misinformation and Rumour Management Programme to support their engagement with communities and to strengthen their Accountability to Affected People.
The Innovation Service has received many requests from operations seeking support with regards to online misinformation and rumour management. To address this, they are launching a Call for proposals to test the creation and management of a rumors tracking – misinformation debunking – system, managed with the support of existing UNHCR community volunteers (or equivalent), partners and POCs.
In the last 5 years an increasing number of humanitarian organizations have started to implement and manage socalled “Rumors Tracking Mechanisms”. Due to the extent of rumours and misinformation circulating around COVID 19, further work in this area and collaborations have increased significantly in efforts to address challenges and arising issues.
Promising practices indicate the important role that communities play in monitoring and managing rumours that are being shared within them. A community-led approach to the moderation and validation of information circulating in a community can strengthen ‘real-time listening’ that leads to changes or resolutions and build trust in both responses and actors.
Scope and Objectives
The system would seek to leverage existing focal points and networks i.e outreach volunteers, community leaders and representatives, to engage them via WhatsApp (or equivalent) to support them to detect, categorize and respond to misinformation, rumors and queries at community/settlement level. The system would seek to train a series of ‘administrators’ to receive and categorize rumors and questions received by UNHCR focal points, volunteers etc.
The administrators would be trained to identify and disseminate verified answers, connecting with the broader humanitarian community and with UNHCR to find reliable information to develop answers in the form of videos, individual responses, audio files and so on. Depending on the situation in country, there could be wider engagement with other actors already working on rumour management and misinformation.
- This will depend on the specific challenge but generally they are unable to provide more than USD 50,000 to ensure that a number of different country operations can benefit from the available support.
- Only UNHCR country operations are able to apply to the challenge and one submission is accepted per operation. This Expression of Interest should command the support of senior management within the operation.
For the Call for Proposals, awarding of funds will be based on the following criteria equally weighted:
- Challenge: Framing of the Challenge and evidence / data to support it with a key focus on inclusive community engagement, leadership and feedback response.
- Solution: Articulation of the solution in context addressing key aspects covered in the background notes. Specific attention will be give to proposed levels of community engagement / meaningful participation considering diversity and inclusion.
- Impact: Potential Impact of the solution in not only in terms of the number of community members supported, but also how the intervention would affect them in their daily lives and build broader community resilience.
- Feasibility: Based on approach, administration, tentative budget a determination on how viable the project will be. Specific consideration will be given to sustainability strategies including community self-management.
For more information, visit https://www.unhcr.org/innovation/digital-inclusion-call/