The Flemish Journalists Association for almost fifty years as an organization, defends, supports, follows the activities of its members, maintaining close contact with freelance journalists. Like a tradition, the association chooses a venue at the end of the year to hold its press conference. On Saturday, December 7, 2013, Hasselt, a province of Limburg, was chosen to highlight on the activities of the year at Holiday Inn hotel.
At 9.30 AM, members had time to introduce themselves and interact with other members, having cordial friendly union behind coffee sharing, minutes after collecting their renewed and conference participation press cards. On time, the conference begins at 10 AM with the introduction of the Flemish Minister for Media, Mrs. Ingrid Lieten, by the chairman of the Flemish Journalists Association, Mr. Walter Van Den Branden.
“Unquestionable the scope of the media is changing rapidly through technology,” says the Flemish media minister. Technology is one factor which has determined the development of communication media in the coming years, increasing communication capacities. “Some years ago, there wasn’t mobile phone, tablet and other media equipments, now following the trends of modern technology, the future of journalist looks brighter than expected,” says Ingrid Lieten.
She quickly reminded the responsibilities and challenges of a journalist, by dissemination of information. The journalist in his or her profession is responsible for the information he or she transmits, not only to the publisher but also to the public. She comments on the significance of the journalist in the society and her pledge to make funds available to provide training for independent freelance journalists to enjoy the same conditions as professional journalists in their service.
Hard work and efficiency are what every nation deserves. That’s what the Flemish Journalists Association saw in the Flemish minister for media, in regard to her dedication and service, as she was presented with a gift by the chairman of the association, Mr. Walter Van Den Branden.
On the agenda was the association’s end of year financial report, which was delivered by the treasurer Mr. Ronald Libin, a staunch member who has remained treasurer for a number of years unopposed. The recognition committee highlighted on the admission of new journalists into the association and those who had been in the association for the past twenty-five years were congratulated and awarded for their hard service and selfless dedication.
The event took a new dimension when at 12:30; members of the association were officially welcomed at the City Hall of Hasselt, by Mrs. Caroline Foot Boot, in charge of education and culture. She commented on the good relationship between the city government and the media. Giving a face lift to Hasselt, she boasted of the city’s 200 catering businesses, the Gin Museum, the nice boutiques and the historical museums, which continue to attract many visitors to the city annually. She also encouraged journalists to visit Hasselt, since culturally the city offers diverse routes of everything to children, individuals and groups
The activities of the day came to conclusion with a nice self-service dinner, set at the Holiday Inn for the members. With thanks and hand shake from Jacques Collen, member of the Flemish Journalists Association, the event was marked an historic occasion.