Betty Abbah, journalist and gender advocate during the December 2016 MediaQ&A spoke on the difference participating in the Alfred Friendly Press Fellowships (AFPF) has made in your career ?
The Alfred Friendly Press Fellowship (about six months hands-on training in the USA a decade ago) was THE turning point in my career as a young journalist, and in many respects, as a person. It exposed me to a new realm of journalism practice: the professionalism, attention to details, independence and also access to various modern tools of practising the exciting career. I learn there is absolutely no substitute for cracking HARD WORK! I observed the American reportage of focusing on the ‘smallest people’, amplifying their voices and experiences.
Also, the need to keep applying ourselves, stay in the dynamic flow of things so we remain relevant by reading widely, observing keenly and mixing with the right impacting groups. A privilege of a life-time, it also afforded me a great opportunity for cross-cultural interchange, having to interact and befriend fellow ‘fellows’ from seven other countries (Pakistan, Nepal, Kenya, Cameroon, Vietnam, Malaysia, Cheq Republic) Shah’s Shah, Peter Makori, Franklin Sone Bayen, Audrey Edwards, Petra Breyerova etc most of whom have remained in touch. I have continued to utilise the skills even in my current activism career, giving voice to the voiceless via advocacy journalism.
To read full report of the session with nine other media professionals click this link