Each week, frayintermedia highlights a journalist doing good work on the continent and honours them as our #FaveOfTheWeek. Meet Doreen Nawa, an award-winning Zambian journalist, media trainer and blogger with over ten years of experience. Nawa has a passion for science reporting, particularly health and agriculture.
Q. How did you become a journalist?
A. From childhood, I just loved talking to people and sharing my stories. And I remember at school, that's what I used to do most. I would sometimes go to vulnerable children in class and they would share their stories and their challenges. Then I would write on the notice board. And my teacher noticed my interest in writing. I was then given the responsibility to mostly put down whatever needs to be put down and get stuck on the notice board. So from that, I grew an interest in writing. When I got to finish school that interest grew further and helped me to do journalism.
Q. What draws you to science journalism?
A. I think science is what we need in Africa. So for me, I find science stories easier than anything else because there's a science element in anything that we do, be it mining, agriculture, health or education. My interests are mainly in health and agriculture and I found that these stories are often found in rural areas. I also found that people rarely tell these stories.
So I gave myself the challenge to be that person that will always endeavour to do stories that are not seen as good stories by many and yet they matter in our daily lives.
Q. What stories should journalists be telling more?
A. They should tell stories that give Africa hope, that challenge Africa to do more, that place Africa on a better standing to fight for its own challenges because I don't think we are that bad as a continent. We have so many positives. I think as African journalists, we need to challenge ourselves to tell the positive stories, to tell the stories that give us hope, the stories that give us hope for the future. The stories will give the next generation a push to do more to take Africa further because I think Africa is better and can be best if journalists tell stories that give hope to Africa.
Q. What makes an exceptional journalist?
A. I think what makes one an exceptional journalist is a passion to do the stories that are not told – stories that even when you get to do them as a journalist, you feel proud of yourself. You feel energised to do more because you've done that story.