Making Their Voices Heard
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Making Their Voices Heard. Presentation to “Leaders for Tomorrow: Rural Women Creating Change” Workshop in Davidson, Saskatchewan February 7 - 8, 2008. Joanne Havelock, Prairie Women’s Health Centre of Excellence, Regina, and Sylvia MacBean, Journalist, Carnduff. Purposes of This Session.

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Making Their Voices Heard

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Making their voices heard

Making Their Voices Heard

Presentation to “Leaders for Tomorrow: Rural Women Creating Change” Workshop in Davidson, SaskatchewanFebruary 7 - 8, 2008

Joanne Havelock,

Prairie Women’s Health Centre of Excellence, Regina, and

Sylvia MacBean, Journalist, Carnduff

Purposes of this session

Purposes of This Session

  • Communication methods for getting the accomplishments and views of rural women more widely recognized.

  • How women outside the rural area can communicate with rural women on common interests.

What is communication

Know who you represent

Have a message

A way to send message

What is Communication?

  • Audience

  • A way to receive message

  • A way to respond to message

  • A way to receive response

  • A plan for answering responses -

    • anticipated

    • unanticipated

Who are rural women

Who Are Rural Women?

  • Many definitions used in research - what makes sense in Saskatchewan?

  • Not in Regina, Saskatoon, Moose Jaw

  • Are smaller cities greater than 10,000 rural?

  • Large towns, small towns,

  • hamlets, acreages, farms,

  • ranches.

  • Is the North rural?

  • Are First Nations reserves in

  • rural areas considered part of rural?

Rural ?




Diversity among rural women

Diversity Among Rural Women

  • Ways of making a living: farm, ranch, education, health, small business

  • Paid and unpaid work: on and off farm, family, community

  • Cultures: First Nations, Metis, European, Asian, more recently African, South American

  • Differing abilities / disabilities

  • Age groups

  • Family types

Consider this diversity

if your audience is rural women.

Who is talking

Who is Talking?

  • Rural women communicating to rural audiences

  • Outside-rural communicating to rural women

Audiences for rural women s messages

Audiences for Rural Women’s Messages


  • Women and girls

  • Men and boys

  • Organizations: city, provincial, national, international

  • Decision-makers: city, provincial, national, international, Aboriginal


  • Women and girls

  • Men and boys

  • Organizations

  • Decision-makers

Methods of communication

Methods of Communication

Person to person

Person to Person

  • Very common means of communicating a message!

  • Coffee row - more often it’s the men

  • At the curling rink, church or other community events

  • Friends and family

  • Display booths at Agribition - Regina, Crop Production Show - Saskatoon



  • Telephone key communication method

  • No more party lines on the phone …

  • Formerly used CB radio, now use VHF on farms

  • Cell phones everywhere, but coverage not good in some areas

  • Satellite telephone in Northern areas

  • SaskTel TalkMail allows you to send messages to a group

More telephone

More Telephone

  • Text messages: Sending short 10 to 15 word) messages through a cell phone

  • SKYPE: over the Internet - talking and seeing each other with a camera on your computer

Rural organizations political and business

Town Council, council website, council meetings, (councilors usually male)

Rural Municipality Office

Members of the Provincial Assembly and Members of Parliament constituency offices

Farm organizations, NFU

Credit Unions and Banks

Co-op stores (bulletin boards)

Post office (bulletin boards)

Rural Organizations - Political and Business

Rural organizations education health

Rural Organizations: Education & Health

  • Playschools and child care centres

  • Elementary and high schools, 4-H

  • Public libraries

  • Regional colleges, online university

  • Health Centre & Hospitals: administration, staff, unions

  • Regional Health Authorities (newsletters)

Rural organizations social

Rural Organizations - Social

  • Churches - many denominations

  • Church women’s groups

  • Saskatchewan Women’s Institutes, NFU Women’s Committee, Kinettes, Lioness

  • Seniors Centres, Legions

  • Hockey and curling rinks, baseball

  • Exercise groups, art groups, theatre

  • Coffee groups, shopping parties

The media

The Media

  • Rural Remote and Northern Women’s Health Community Kit has suggestions re communicating your message to the media

Communicating with the media

Communicating with the Media

  • Keep messages clear and simple, if you have several messages, communicate several times

  • Media are trying to do a good job in a short time

  • Develop relationship with reporters interested in your topic, provide them with information

  • Have a list of people who can be interviewed, hopefully someone who can speak French too!

  • Call newsroom a day or two ahead to see if they got your information and are sending someone

Notifying the media

Notifying the Media

Fax announcements and check by phone

  • Public service announcements: time, date, place, cost and contact for an event that is occurring to be put on event notices

  • Media advisory: tell media they can attend event.

  • Media release: announces an event, release of a report, etc. and talks about content and issues

  • Include phone/cell where you can be reached and be ready to be interviewed or connect to others

    Can also phone newsroom or directly e-mail reporter

Events visuals

Events & Visuals

  • When planning events, try to include something that is visually interesting so that it will be interesting for media photos and more memorable to those attending and those viewing media reports

  • Include music, theatre, improv, dance or other elements to make the event more memorable

  • Try to use different locations for media interviews to make back-drop more interesting

Rural newspapers

Rural Newspapers

  • Weekly or monthly - 86 in Sask

  • Saskatchewan Weekly Newspapers Association:

    • has Market Analyzer for each paper

    • will distribute articles, press releases or ads across province

  • Classified ads not useful for events

  • Use Coming Events columns

  • Display ads not as high cost as in City

  • Write articles and send them to weeklies

Tips on writing articles ads

Tips on Writing Articles & Ads

  • 300 to 1200 words for a weekly newspaper article

  • In column format each paragraph is a thought

  • Don’t say anything that would embarrass anyone

  • Compose in Word. Include text in e-mail message with Word document attached. Papers use Macintosh systems, some can’t read Word

  • Put photo cutlines in email where you want photo (photo description and photographer)

  • Email photo or graphics separately in JPG format

  • It’s easier for them to layout ads themselves in their system and then send to you to look over

Other news outlets

Other News Outlets

  • Western Producer: Western Canada (coming events list, articles)

  • AgriView

  • Wheat Board (monthly newsletter)

  • Manitoba Cooperator

  • Lifestyles: free insert in Estevan and Weyburn papers -also other areas?

  • Free monthly newspapers: Prairie Dog (Regina), Planet S (Saskatoon)

  • Aboriginal media



  • AM has wider range, FM more local

  • Golden West in Kindersley and Rosetown, Estevan and Weyburn, Moose Jaw, Swift Current

  • CBC Radio One - across the province: news, phone-in show at 1:00 PM, Down on the Corner lists events

  • Radio Canada: French

  • CBC North in LaRonge

  • John Gormley show: opinions

  • PSA’s in Regina & Saskatoon rock radio stations, news reports

  • Community radio: news, interviews - CJTR Regina

Television access

Television Access

Rural areas get TV

  • Free through the air: CBC English & French, STV - Global, CTV

  • Cable: Yorkton etc, available to larger and medium towns

  • Satellite: many providers

  • Internet: can watch television through the Internet

Television stations

Television Stations

  • CBC, STV, CTV, APTN: news, portion of special programs - farm, health, investigative

  • Saskatchewan Communications Network: dramas, documentaries - suggest programs to show, partner with a film-maker to make a film or video

  • SCN Special Events Network: one-way video and audio from one to many sites with interaction available through telephone, fax and Internet

  • Cable stations: local productions, local talk shows

Internet access

Internet Access

  • Much use in rural Sask but still not everyone has a computer at home or can use it

  • Public computers at locations such as libraries

  • CommunityNet: high speed networking to Sask government, health and educational organizations

  • Mix of Internet access in rural: dial-up SaskTel phone lines, Cable TV, wireless in some areas (SaskTel, YourLink), SCN Digital Satellite Network to organizations

  • Dial-up - send text in e-mail, photos and documents take a long time to download

Internet person to person

Internet Person-to-Person

  • E-mail: send notes, send letters, documents, photos

  • List-serves: people sign up to receive messages on a topic, you send in a message, then:

    • Moderated lists: messages reviewed by someone before sending out

    • Unmoderated: messages are not reviewed

More internet

More Internet

  • MSN: you sign up and then can have a back and forth written conversation with others on MSN

  • Facebook and MySpace: Users join networks to connect and interact with other people. Users can update their personal profiles to notify friends about themselves.

  • Meetings over the Internet using a camera on your computer

Internet websites

Internet Websites

  • Set up like a newsletter page

  • Can be set up by individuals or organizations

  • Can have text, photos, audio, video and spaces for writing comments, or signing up for events

  • Takes planning and a good volunteer with technical knowledge or some funding to hire someone to set up a website

  • Must maintain website regularly

  • Can be seen all over the world

Connecting rural women

Connecting Rural Women

  • E-mail, high-speed Internet & teleconferencing are useful.

  • Face to face meetings are important, but difficult with a widely-spread population.

  • Women willing to gather within one hour of home.

  • Women like activities with some relaxation and fun.

  • Lack of rural women’s groups makes connecting more difficult.

Messages from rural women

Messages from Rural Women

  • What is the image of rural women?

  • What conditions would they like addressed?

  • What events or people would you like to publicize?

Discussion questions

Discussion Questions

  • What are some key messages that rural women want to send out?

  • What are some messages you’d like to send to rural women?

  • Who needs to hear these messages?

Making their voices heard

Thanks for participating!

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