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Judging for IJNet storytelling contest begins

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Thank you to the many members of the IJNet community who told us how IJNet helped you learn a new skill or find training.

The most inspiring and creative story will win an iPad or $500 gift card. Four runners-up will each receive a US$50 gift card. Check out our contest page here to enter.

We'll announce the contest winner next month.

Photo courtesy of ICFJ.

We encourage you to comment below, but comments do not count as entries. Enter here.

Judging

Hi, I was wondering if you have finsihed judging and declared the results. I could not find the results on the site. Would love to know whose story had the greatest impact.

Re: Career changing opportunity

Sometime in 2008, I felt my career was drawing to a close despite working for a newly set up and most vibrant English newspaper in Tanzania. I hadn’t been on annual leave for the four years I had worked for the newspaper and I felt unmotivated and ideas of leaving the profession altogether started crawling up. I had three pending PR jobs offers by the most reputable firms in town but I felt PR was a no go route considering the amount of time and efforts I had spent trying to become a journalist. I recalled clearly the poverty and hopelessness which surrounded me while growing up and played a big role to shape who I would like to become once the earliest opportunity for my career was availed. Still that couldn’t help. It was around that time when my senior colleague introduced me to IJNet which I started visiting regularly to read different articles on career development and eventually signed up for e-mail notifications. In one of the e-mails I received, it had an advert for the UN Dag Hammarskjöld fellowship, which I applied for. Covering the United Nations under the mentorship of world class journalists such as Evelyn Leopold, Betsy Pisik and William Reilly helped me not only learn how to report international affairs but also recuperate my determination to bring to the discussion table the stories of those whom I feel need to be told if their situation is ever to improve. It also helped me grasp the kind of journalism I wanted to be associated with – that which brings about real change to ordinary lives for the better. After the fellowship, I joined another newspaper as its news editor and won another award which entailed working in London for the biggest newspapers such as The Times and The Independent. I am now working as a freelance journalist for mainly European and South African newspapers, magazines and online newspapers from Africa. And of course, I still read IJNet especially on how social media skills and freelancing.

A miracle in my professionnal life

I am francophone journalist working in Bénin, a small country located in West Africa. But can speak and write in English. I begun to visit Ijnet since 2005. I am subscribed to this WebSite that I find very beautiful and I receive every week new opportunities for journalists. Whenever I log on to the site, I automatically directs myseldf to 'New Opportunity Worldwide and Africa’. In 2006, I applied to a training workshop on malaria in Cameroon organized by Scidev and I was chosen. What pleasure? In 2010, I applied to Women's Edition Project 2010 organized by PRB, unfortunately I have not been retained. But I did not despairing, and I continue to write quality articles on family planning, the health of the mother and child. Already in their database, PRB began to invite media to cover international conferences on family planning. And this year I found the annoucement on Women's Edition Project 2012 on IJNet. I hesitate a long time before applying. But as I visit regularly the website, it recalls the deadline that is September 15. Finally I sent my application form with requested items. What a surprise, after deliberation, I receive an email from Women's edition in my inbox. This time was a good one, my application is successful and I am part of the 15 women journalists Selected among 300 others around the world to participate in this great project for two years. It is like à miracle in my professionnal life. I laughed, I smiled and I even danced in my office and I told everyone I won.

IJNet thank you, I know what I won with this network. Thanks to it, I am now the focal point of PRB (Population Reference Bureau) in Benin in charge of the mobilisation of media around issues of family planning, population, health of the mother and child. IJNet thank you and long life to you with plenty of opportunities to offer. Every journalist, wherever in the world must use this formidable website. Makeba Tchibozo Journalist Benin

Tipping Point - A Mentor and a Soul mate!

I was entrusted with new responsibilities at work place by our executive editor of Patrika Group of Newspaper ( No 2 newspaper brand of India) Mr Nihar Kothari and had to work on a new division responsible for social and editorial campaigning and cause! Had no clear idea how will I take it forward with my stint into academics and journalism? I had no knowledge of this new sector. But I had learned to follow my Heart and I knew the day I decide to know the right the right page from the Book of Life will flutter to show me the path. Don’t know when I subscribed to IJNet and developed a habit of reading the pages religiously. But as the year passed by i realize now it was the Magic book of life for me to know more avenues and trends into Journalism as I was exploring and experimenting within the strict regime of newspaper set up. Thence I got directed as if by an invisible power to develop an online platform with better understanding of digital media and stored innovative tools for future use. Like Data Journalism videos, contest ideas, lessons into reporting, content etc has helped us integrate our content into newspaper supplements in a better way and also plan the campaign strategies for change more confidently and differently. The most fascinating of them all has been constant motivation through IJNet to build our efforts around the emerging concepts of development reporting. This way IJnet may not have earned me/ my team a fellowship or an award yet but it has mentored me to take lead in newer segments and has become most reliable resource for me to touch my soul! When I hardly have anyone understanding the work I have been expected to develop I also have no one to discuss and share my thoughts. IJnet becomes an assurance of right move! Taking a cue from its format we developed our website and e newsletter and tried to customize our content the way IJNet does though the reach is no as wide as IJNet, we are just striving to build a model around social interventions. www.mediaactiongroup.in I have been able to share with my huge teams working in 7 states of India to know more about fellowships, awards, scholarships etc and they now undertake those works which have potential to get recognized world over. Suddenly the reporting on the aspects of gender and environment has gone up and our photo journos are conscious as we applied to several awards without any major success yet. But, monetary benefit and recognition apart I bet on a more meaningful relationship which teaches me each time i get into it! It’s the value of having right people/ network around us not for what we get from them but what we learn from them. Thanks for being by my side and showing me the right page and right chapter upon the call of my subconscious.

Dr Shipra Mathur News Editor, Patrika Group of Newspapers National Head, Media Action Group ( Development Communication; Campaign and Cause) www.mediaactiongroup.in +91 9928015504 kshipra.mathur@epatrika.com

how ijnet changed my life and made me what am now

ijenet has been my mentore,,and everything. i joined makerere university to pusue abusiness course just afetr my higfh school. that was all i wanted hoping to become abanker at the end of it all. my dreams of becoming abanker were sharted two yers down the road when my dad lost his job and could not afford my tuition fees. i droped out of the university and relocated from the city to villege not knowing what to do next. with no quolification i opted to try my luck at alocal radio station ready to do any donky work to get some money. impressed with my responses during the interview i was given a trial to read news which turned oy so good. the bosses were impressed by my english ,intonation. i used to immitate a news reader i loved so much and that earned me aplace in the news department as anews reader. for the next three months i was reading news .then later i was given some basic training on news reporting then asked to try reporting because three of the news reporters had gone for greener pasture leaving avaccum in the department.which i did and my editor would correct me when ever i need assistance.my turning point came three years ago when i met one of the journalists chistopher conte during his fellowship in uganda and he introduced me to ijenet, since he was working with the international center for journalism. he always printed me hand outs and information on journalism and posted them for me in my email. he always encouraged me to read the information which i did .the more i did the more i developed the desire to know more . this built me up .now becouse of the knowlege i got and manege to get from ijenet i maneged to write better stories which has earned me a position as a news editor.with out even adegree not even adeploma in journalism. i have become atrainer and amentor to other journalist i always refer to ijnet for materials to guide my reporters .with ijnet there is no turning back i have never thought of ever going back to finish my business course . my efforts are now being recorgnised in the region. thanks to ijenet and chris conte i would have been locked in the outside world with out ijenet.i am now majour in health reporting and investigative reporting.

Re: how ijnet changed my life and made me what am now

We hope you'll enter the contest! Here's the page where you can submit your story: http://ijnet.org/story-contest/submit-story

A gift that changed my perception

In late 90s, I was pestering a senior lady colleague who just returned from a fellowship on how to improve my self professionally and she gave me a gift. Though a graduate of journalism long before then, I never knew a lot of opportunities abound for journalist in the world. In fact after graduation in 1994, I had already planned to start journalism practice at the age of 36, when I would have worked for someone for some years, gain some experience and use journalism as retirement activity, but a link to IJNET changed just all that following discovery of bundle of empowerment through training, scholarship and fellowship. So, fast-tracking my journalism choice of career by 10 years, there is no regret as ever since, I had planned one training or another for myself, especially on discovery that most media owners are not keen in developing their workforce. Today, apart from being an advocate of information sharing, especially through group lists, which I created and continued to manage and moderate, to further extend the reach; for me the training continues, every other week with kind of educative information I receive from IJNET, especially those stuff one cannot get from the class room. You get it here, just a link to a website. A gift that was to change my perception of journalism and its practice for life.

A gesture I hope to replicate differently beyond what I am doing now.

Remmy Nweke, Group Executive Editor, DigitalSENSE News, ITRealms, NaijaAgroNet.

RE: A gift that changed my perception

Thanks, Remmy! We hope you'll enter the contest! Here's the page where you can submit your story: http://ijnet.org/story-contest/submit-story

I Got a Chance to join international Training and more

I use this website last two years when got an internet broadband access. Last year got a chance to join J-Ethinomics one week online course from Center for International Media Ethics (CIME). Every times find new information, education, and access of journalistic knowledge. Sometimes know about the story of successful journalists. Rakesh P. Chaudhary Nepal

Re: I Got a Chance to join international Training and more

Thanks, Rakesh! We hope you'll enter the contest! You can submit your entry here: http://ijnet.org/story-contest

I GOT A JOB WITH THE BBC COURTESY OF IJNet

It would be an understatement to say that IJNet has helped me, it has done more than that, it has actually given me a life, a job for that matter. On 2nd June this year, IJNet ran an advertisement that the BBC Swahili seeks broadcast journalist, and I went for it. As for now I am proud to say I got the job. So "I didnt do that, someone else did" LoL. Thats my story, thanks IJNet. I am Duncan Munene, Broadcast Journalist at the BBC East Africa Bureau, Nairobi.

Re: I GOT A JOB WITH THE BBC COURTESY OF IJNet

Thanks, Duncan! We hope you'll enter the contest! You can submit your entry here: http://ijnet.org/story-contest

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