ECCF is a non-profit organisation that works with local independent media in the Eastern Cape. There are about 40 independent publications from weekly to monthly and about 20 licensed newspapers from the Eastern Cape Province. ECCF acknowledges the role that community media plays in our communities and understands the challenges the sector faces. Through its capacity building interventions it is able to provide support to strengthen the sector. ECCF is in partnership with Walter Sisulu University.
The organisation was founded in 2006 in response to the conference “The Development Agenda & Public Debate – The Provincial Growth & Development Plan (PGDP)” inEast Londonin September 2005. Delegates from local and provincial government, local media organisations and civil society organisations identified communication challenges between the three sectors.
The ECCF initially operated as an informal forum with the main objective of improving communication between local and provincial government, local media organisations and civil society organisations. Stakeholders representing the different sectors met regularly and identified and implemented relevant projects.
ECCF officially registered as a non-profit organisation (NPO) with the Department of Social Development in June 2008. A coordinator joined ECCF in November 2008. ECCF held its first Annual General Meeting (AGM) in May 2009 and democratically elected a new Board.
A media hub was developed as a centre for community journalists. It serves a a one-stop agency for government, business and civil society organisations to liaise with local media.
Successful workshops and on-site training ranging from advertising and marketing, investigative journalism, to photography have been offered since 2009.