Our relationship with the BBC
Relationship with the BBC
The BBC World Service Trust is the BBC’s international development charity
The BBC WST grew out of earlier BBC initiatives – including the charity ‘Marshall Plan of the Mind’ set up to encourage high standards of journalism in the Former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe in the 1990s.
As a charity, the BBC WST focuses on providing people in developing and transitional countries with development-focused information that is timely, reliable and useful. We aim to inform and educate audiences with a view to enabling people to be at the centre of their own development. Our aim is to help people to help themselves.
The work of the BBC WST currently reaches more than 300 million people through local broadcast partners, BBC channels (especially the BBC World Service, see below), online, mobile and print platform. We prize the development of innovative approaches in engaging people, especially those living in poverty.
"Making a difference on a daily basis"
Peter Horrocks, Chair of Trustees
Established by the BBC in 1999, BBC WST often draws on the reach, skills and creativity of the BBC, but it is legally, financially and operationally independent.
We are funded by external grants and voluntary contributions, mainly from the UK's Department for International Development (DFID), the European Union, UN agencies and charitable foundations. We receive a small amount of core support from the BBC (both in kind and cash). We do not receive money from the BBC licence fee.
In the BBC structure, BBC WST sits in the Global News Division (BBC World Service, BBC World News, BBC Monitoring and BBC WST).
As the BBC’s international development charity we share the same values as our colleagues across the corporation: trust, audiences, quality, creativity, respect and working together.
BBC WST often draws on the extensive experience and expertise of the BBC, making use of technical resources and maintaining the highest professional standards of BBC broadcasting and programme-making in all of our output.
We sometimes work in partnership with the BBC World Service, particularly the language services, as radio is often the most effective medium for speaking directly to the world's poorest communities in languages they understand. Partnership with the BBC World Service gives us an unparalleled channel for providing trusted information to millions of people. But we work with multiple other local broadcasters too, to help strengthen the media as a development tool or to reach the audiences we need to engage with.
BBC WST is an independent charity registered in England and Wales (charity number 1076235), governed by a Board of Trustees
. The board has members both from the BBC (currently three) and from the development sector more widely (currently five). The Chair is Peter Horrocks, who is also the Director of BBC Global News, while the Deputy Chair is Richard Manning, a former Director-General at DFID and former Chair of the Development Assistance Committee of OECD.