Building a USAID Communications Network

Strengthening an expanding cadre of global communications specialists
From 2006 to 2018, MSI executed the DOC Training Program in partnership with USAID’s Legislative and Public Affairs (LPA) Bureau.

For more than a decade, we were the provider of critical training and strategic communications support services to USAID’s global communications efforts. Working with the key leadership in the front office and the Legislative and Public Affairs Bureau, we built a worldwide training and support program that is now seen as one of the Agency’s flagship training programs.

The Development Outreach and Communications (DOC) training program is often credited with changing the landscape of field-based USAID communications.

Our support enabled USAID to expand awareness of foreign aid to host country audiences. Polling illustrated that citizens not only gained a greater understanding of international development assistance but more specifically, the U.S. government’s contributions.

From a network of just over 20 communicators at inception, the program directly contributed to creating more than 160 communications positions around the world. High caliber, adult-oriented trainings helped the Agency to launch social media channels, equip staff with skills to make videos and paid ads, support high-level visits, gain greater media traction, and become more adept storytellers on numerous platforms, including Exposure and Medium.

We also helped to infuse the importance of communications planning, developing first-ever tools for the Agency, including strategic communications indicators and a results-based approach to communications.

Our adult-focused learning and training programs:

  • Strengthened staff capacity in messaging and outreach;
  • Enabled the launch of social media channels and engagement with host country audiences;
  • Equipped staff with skills to make videos and paid ads for television and radio;
  • Helped Missions to gain greater media coverage on key development topics; and
  • Built an understanding of a results-based approach to planning, thereby helping to assess return on investment of activities.




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