Thursday, October 29, 2015

Apply Now: Pulliam Journalism Fellowship

The Indianapolis Star and The Arizona Republic, Gannett Co. newspapers, are seeking college students and new graduates with a talent for reporting, news design and graphics, or photojournalism for an exciting and demanding journalism fellowship program.

Why should I apply for this journalism program?

You'll be a member of our newsroom, work hard and gain valuable journalism experience. You get paid, too. Our Pulliam Fellows earn $650/week for the 10-week program. You'll also get to participate in writing workshops and learn over lunch from some of the best minds in journalism.

Am I qualified for this journalism program?

College juniors, seniors and graduate students enrolled in a journalism or related degree program as of Nov. 1, 2015, are eligible. Previous newspaper journalism internships and/or experience as a journalist on a college newspaper are preferred. You need to be committed to a career in news journalism. You must have reliable transportation and arrange for your own housing. We are an equal opportunity employer that values diversity among its journalism fellows.

What's the deadline for this journalism application?

All application materials must be postmarked by Nov. 1, 2015. (We may accept some journalism candidates after the deadline.)

Find details and application formalities here:

Monday, October 19, 2015


On the 20th and 21st October, 2015, Penplusbytes, in association with FundraisingAfrica, will hold 2 strategy briefings for organisations (Civil Society Organisations, and Non-profits in Ghana) on the theme: “Developing a winning strategy for fundraising using new digital technologies” at the New Media Hub in Accra.

The programme is necessitated by need for non-profits in Ghana to survive in the wake of recent declines in donor driven support; a situation that could be attributed to Ghana’s new status as a middle income country and the ever increasing number of organisations in the space.

The briefing sessions are targeted at 40 individuals (20 per session), comprising Executive Directors or Heads, Directors of Marketing, Directors of Funding and Partnerships and Directors of Strategy, representing various Think Tanks, International NGO’s, Faith based Organisations, Clubs, Community Based Organisations and Associations. Other categories are donors, Regional Based organisations, Hubs and, Grant and Fund Managers. It will seeks to provide participants with skills and knowledge needed to explore other avenues for fund raising in order to put them and their organisations on the path of sustainability and growth.

Having garnered extensive experience in institutional and capacity strengthening at all levels of governance, policy influencing, people and fund management, Mr. Ibrahim Tanko, an independent Consultant, is slated to be the Guest of honour.

Participants will be briefed on varied topics of relevance that include, Success factors for digital fundraising including social media, Marketing your organisation to attract revenue from online donation and the role of electronic payment systems in fundraising. Other lessons will be shared on Crowdsourcing and fund raising strategies using Fundraising Africa, Setting online fundraising systems and campaigning using Fundraising Africa platforms.

Kwami Ahiabenu, II, Executive Director of Penplusbytes, describes the planned briefing as timely, adding that, “the ability to use technology to raise funds is not a future prospect but a present reality since non-profits across the globe are making use of these new forms of tools, processes and strategies to undertake fund raising for their organisations.”

The Fundraising Using New Digital Tools briefing sessions are a recognition of the opportunities made possible through ICTs application and thus, the need for Ghanaian non-profits to leverage this new rapid growing fund raising platforms for their growth.


Penplusbytes is a not-for-profit organization driving change through innovations in three key areas: using new digital technologies to enable good governance and accountability, new media and innovations, and driving oversight for effective utilisation of mining, oil and gas revenue and resources.

FundraisingAfrica is an online platform that can be used to raise funds for a wide variety of personal, nonprofit, religious, and event-related causes; enabling fundraisers to receive electronic donations from all over Ghana, as well as the rest of the world.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Assurance Committee of Parliament Embark on Citizen Engagement Roadshow

Penplusbytes, with support from the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) is, today, Monday October 12th, 2015, holding a one-day forum for Citizens, Civil Society Organisations and the Media to interact with Parliament’s Committee on Government Assurance (CGA) at the Forever Young Conference Centre in the Twifo Hemang Lower Denyira District of the Central Region.

The forum is one of many being held periodically across the country to foster greater, direct collaboration between the CGA and major stakeholders on the committee’s prime business of exercising oversight responsibility of ensuring that promises and assurances made in Parliament are carried out to the letter.

As an integral part of the implementation strategy of the Connecting Citizens to Parliament project, the forum, like previous ones held in Ho and Tamale which produced a communique, is expected to enhance the ability of citizens to hold duty bearers accountable through increased interaction between them and Parliament. This is to ensure effective and timely public service delivery across the country. It is expected to provide an added opportunity for the stakeholders to put before the committee their grievances and feedback on developmental project.

The Central Region citizens’ engagement will have in attendance Hon. Joseph Foster Andoh, Member of Parliament for Hemang Lower Denyira constituency and a member of the CGA as well as other members of the project’s implementation team. It will provide stakeholders with an opportunity to have firsthand experience of the workings of the project including its multiple channels of engagement such as the short code 9030, web-platform , mobile app, as well as social media tools such as Facebook and Twitter @govassurance.

Kwami Ahiabenu II, Executive Director of Penplusbytes, describes citizens’ engagements as key to ensuring transparency and accountability is owned at the grassroots level, adding that, the Committee on Government Assurances seeks accountability to the Ghanaian people through their elected representatives as well as other officials who make assurances on various developmental projects that affects the people. “Providing opportunities for them to make their inputs known is only in order,” he said.

The goal of the project, “Connecting Citizens to Parliament”, is to contribute to the improvement of service delivery by amplifying citizen’s concerns, displeasures, complaints, satisfactions or suggestions as a means of holding duty bearers accountable.

Note to Editors.
Penplusbytes is a not-for-profit organization driving change through innovations in three key areas: using new digital technologies to enable good governance and accountability, new media and innovations, and driving oversight for effective utilisation of mining, oil and gas revenue and resources.
Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) is an open society foundations that works to build vibrant and tolerant societies whose governments are accountable and open to the participation of all people.

Thursday, October 08, 2015

APPLY NOW: World Curling Federation (WCF) Sports Media Trainee Programme

Full time students, from around the world, are invited to submit entries for the development programme, that offers invaluable experiences in journalism, photography and TV production at some of the WCF’s most high profile events.

In season 2015/16, successful applicants will be immersed in the media operations of one of the fastest growing Olympic and Paralympic winter sports and will be given direction from WCF’s Communications and Media Relations team.

The WCF are supported by Global Sports Development in the delivery of this programme.
Applications are now being taken from students for eight positions. They are:

A One journalism trainee and one photography trainee for the Le Gruyère European Curling Championships 2015 in Esbjerg, Denmark from 20-28 November 2015;
B One journalism trainee, one photography trainee and a TV production trainee for the World Junior Curling Championships 2016 in Erzurum, Turkey from 5-13 March 2016
C and a trainee in each of the three disciplines for the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship in Karlstad, Sweden from 16-24 April 2016.

Entries are now open and must be submitted no later than 13:00 GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) on Tuesday 20 October 2015.


Each winner will be rewarded with a fully paid trip to one of these Championships, including return flights, accommodation and some living expenses for the duration of the event.

A. The trainees selected for the Le Gruyère European Curling Championships 2015 in Esbjerg, Denmark will be expected to arrive, approximately, on 18 November and depart on 29 November.

B. The trainees selected for the World Junior Curling Championships 2016 in Erzurum, Turkey will be expected to arrive, approximately, on 3 March and depart on 14 March.

C. The trainees selected for the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship 2016 in Karlstad, Sweden will be expected to arrive, approximately, on 14 April and depart on 25 April.



Overview: Journalist entrants are required to demonstrate their ability to write a newsworthy story and develop creative interview questions.

·  Students are asked to submit a 500 word report on their sporting hero’s greatest moment and why it was so special to them.
·  Students must also write six questions, three that they would ask the gold medal winning skip following their victory in a World Junior Curling Championships final and three questions they would ask the losing skip based on the line-scores pictured below.
·  Entries exceeding the word count will NOT be accepted.
·  Students must clearly state which event they would be willing to attend based on the breakdown above: A. B. C. or ANY.
·  Entries are to be submitted in Microsoft Word formats (.doc / .docx).


Overview: Photographers are invited to show their creativity and skill by providing a selection of images of a sporting activity.

Task: Students are asked to submit 10 images from a local sports event that captures both movement and the passion within the sport(s) of choice.
·  Students should include a list of all their photography equipment. Failure to include this may lead to the entry not being accepted.
·  Students must clearly state which event they would be willing to attend based on the breakdown above: A. B. C. or ANY.
·  All images are to be submitted in .jpg format.
·  Each image size must not exceed 500kb.

TV Production

Overview: Candidates wishing to apply for the position of TV Production trainee must demonstrate their interest and understanding of broadcast media.

·  Candidates must write 300 words explaining what aspects of live TV sports production interests them and why.
·  In addition to this written document, TV Production trainees must also submit an up-to-date Curriculum Vitae (CV / Resume).
·  Students must clearly state which event they would be willing to attend based on the breakdown above: A. B. C. or ANY.
·  These documents should be submitted in Microsoft Word formats (.doc / .docx).


Please send your applications to no later than 13:00 GMT on Tuesday 20 October 2015. Please attach the Word Documents or Images to your email along with the following information:
·  Full name:
·  Address:
·  Date of Birth:
·  Phone Number (inc. country code):
·  Name of Educational Institution:
·  Course Title:
·  Course Contact (they will be contacted should you be shortlisted):
Winners will be notified no later than Friday 23 October 2015.


Applicants must be aged 18 years or above.

Applicants must be studying for more than 12 hours per week in a recognised High School, College or University.

All applicants are responsible for any additional costs personally incurred during their time on the Programme, for example missed departures and travel insurance and will be responsible for arranging visas (costs incurred here will be reimbursed by the WCF).

Applicants must be able to travel to the Championships for the dates mentioned above.

Each applicant must have a valid passport that has more than six months on it, from the first day of travel, before it expires.

Applications from previous winners of the Sport Media Trainee Programme will not be considered.

Please note: The World Curling Federation is keen to ensure the competition is as accessible as possible to students from all over the world by allowing entries to be submitted in their native language. However, basic English would be an essential requirement to be eligible to take part effectively in this programme.

MORE about the Sport Media Trainee Programme

The WCF's Sports Media Trainee Programme is aimed at aspiring young sports writers, TV production students and trainee photographers.

Students from around the world are given a unique opportunity to develop journalistic, broadcast production or photography skills in a practical setting, providing them with first-hand knowledge and experience to help them progress prospective careers within the media industry.

Trainee journalists will get to interview athletes and others involved in the Championship for regular news reports, while they will also be given the opportunity to write some feature reports.

Photographers meanwhile will be tasked with capturing all the action on the ice and behind the scenes for the duration of the Championship.

TV production trainees will get a wide grounding in many aspects of staging a live sports host broadcast production. Tasks may include assisting with audio and camera equipment, working with the World Curling TV ENG news feature crew and helping the WCTV Production Management team.

In addition to their work for the WCF, trainees may also be asked to assist their own Member Association’s communications (should they be participating in the event) as well.

Monday, October 05, 2015

Penplusbytes, NRGI holds 6th Regional Media Training Program on Extractives

On Monday 5th October to Saturday, 17th October, 2015 at the New Media Hub in Accra, Penplusbytes is partnering Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) to hold a twelve (12) day training on the extractives sector for a group of Fifteen (15) journalists from Ghana, Uganda and Tanzania.

The capacity building training program which falls under the Strengthening Media Oversight of the Extractive Sectors project will help to promote effective and consistent media oversight of oil, gas and mining activities as a pathway to increasing the number and quality of stories about extractives across all media platforms.

The training programme meant for early-to mid-career reporters will offer a wide range of benefits including providing holistic and comprehensive support to journalists through specialized knowledge and skills modules; professional mentoring; experiential learning; access to sources and vital information. It will also provide access to data as well encourage interaction with peers, experts, policy makers, and oversight actors.

Bringing on board experts from the extractives industry, participants will be taken through workshop sessions to discuss varied topics that include the Role of the Journalist, Natural Resource Decision Chain, Legal Frameworks and Checklist for Strong and Compelling Stories. Other lessons will be on the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI), and Revenue Management.

Penplusbytes’ Executive Director, Kwami Ahiabenu, II, believes that good governance of oil, gas and mining resources and the revenues they generate requires effective oversight. An effective oversight however hinges on an informed, responsive and dynamic media to provide necessary and accurate information to the public about critical governance issues. “Here lies an opportunity for journalists to develop more insight and skills on the sector in Africa in ways that that are self-sustaining,” he added.

As part of the training, participants will also take trips to Golden Star Resources in Prestea and Goldfields Mining Company in Tarkwa to experience at first hand, their operations as a means to broadening their scope and knowledge base about mining activities.

On his expectations, Godwill Arthur-Mensah of the Ghana News Agency (GNA) and a participant of the training program said “the extractive sector remains one of the most critical areas of our economy and as a journalist, it behooves me to contribute to ensuring proper management of its revenue. This training is a chance to broaden my knowledge on the sector.”

Penplusbytes is a not-for-profit organization driving change through innovations in three key areas: using new digital technologies to enable good governance and accountability, new media and innovations, and driving oversight for effective utilisation of mining, oil and gas revenue and resources.

Penplusbytes believes that an active, knowledgeable press plays a critical role in helping to inform and engage the public, citizen groups and parliaments and thus help them hold government and companies accountable. However, in many resource-rich countries, journalists lack the knowledge and skills to report and write in depth on oil, gas and mineral issues.

The Natural Resource Governance Institute is a non-profit policy institute and grantmaking organization that promotes effective, transparent and accountable management of oil, gas and mineral resources for the public good. Through capacity building, technical assistance, research and advocacy, the NRGI help countries to realize the development benefits of their natural resource wealth.

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Featured Member for the Month of October: Lwazi Nyanakancesh Nongauza

LwaziLwazi Nyanakancesh Nongauza is professionally trained journalist based in Johannesburg, South Africa with vast experience in print and broadcast media.

Having Studied Performing Arts at the Arts and Media Access Center in 2006 as well as Film Making and Television Productions at the Century Film School in 2009, Lwazi has garnered extensive work experience as a Film, Radio, Television content producer, online media manager, Voice Over artist and a Performing artist. He has a proven and an outstanding broadcasting experience that spans about 10 years; holding roles such as Media Manager, CTV Production coordinator, TV Reporter for Design Indaba, South African correspondent for AV Web TV among others.

Being multi-skilled has meant that Lwazi’ has indeed, practically, applied himself to all the facets of media work. In Radio, he has worked with Radio Zibonele and Radio Kaap se Punt. His international broadcasting work experience include, France 2's Freelance field, Switzerland TV, and African Voices Web TV and has been involved as a production assistance in Stokvel and Shooting Stars all in South Africa. In Print media, he has written for Ibhola Labantu, Transformation South Africa, Carob Magazine and Spotlight News.

Lwazi has an excellent writing and verbal communication skills, and is the co-author of the book titled Ayee (ISBN 9780796921796).

As a dreamer with a vision to help drive the African continent forward, Lwazi Nyanakancesh Nongauza currently has a registered foundation in his name; the Lwazi Nyanakancesh Nongauza Foundation which has set before it a mission to tackle the challenge of access to institutions of higher learning for physically challenged people by facilitating tertiary study financial assistance strictly for deserving physically challenged people from poor backgrounds in South Africa.

With an equally impressive stretch of experience in online media activities that include major stints with Mzansi Post, SME South Africa, Africa News Byte, Ease Magazine, TO Africa News and Football 24, Lwazi and his foundation is set to soon launch a new online youth lifestyle publication called Dream Afrika to serve as an inspirational source and hub for academic excellence; providing content that focuses on African youth leadership, African Innovation, African Entrepreneurial excellence and African education strides etc.

Dream Afrika is one of Lwazi’s contribution to providing hope and empowerment to the African youth.