Media outreach is essential to successfully fulfilling the United Nations Information Centres' core role of communicating information about the work of the United Nations. UNICs are in daily contact with local and national media outlets to ensure the messages of the UN reach as wide an audience as possible and as quickly as possible.
UNIC staff produce press releases, press kits, brochures, posters and background information on various UN-related topics. They also brief journalists on the issues on the United Nations agenda, contribute articles to newspapers and appear on national radio and television programmes. Several Centres produce their own programmes for broadcast by local stations. UNIC offices also translate UN press releases and other information materials into local languages, thereby enabling the dissemination of UN-related information to an even broader audience.
Journalists rely on UNICs as authoritative sources of information about the United Nations. In addition to providing information materials to journalists, UNICs organize press conferences, facilitate field visits for journalists who want to cover UN activities in the area and organize training workshops. UNICs also manage press accreditation for media events, conferences and seminars held in the country and maintain a roster of accredited journalists. They are also responsible for media arrangements for visiting United Nations officials, including the Secretary-General.
A number of centres organize press clubs, or work through existing journalists' networks and associations, to exchange ideas among media practitioners.