I developed a passion for writing vivid agricultural stories after my first training with WRENmedia in 2009. Before then, I was not sure how I could build a professional career around agriculture, the course I had studied for five years. So combining my flair for writing and a passion to see an end to hunger in Nigeria and indeed Africa, I have been actively involved in agricultural journalism since then. I particularly focus on information which can help farmers and other agribusiness investors in and around Nigeria to improve and expand their businesses.
My interest in reporting on agriculture grew rapidly early in my journalism career. In 1997 I was asked to do a radio story for the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation's (CTA) Rural Radio Resource Pack, and since then, I have grown deep journalistic roots with WRENmedia, constantly learning and polishing my writing craft through training, mentorship and some good travels around Africa. In 2008, I participated in a WRENmedia agriculture reporting course covering a global conference on bananas held in Mombasa, Kenya. I went bananas when a feature I wrote for IPS from that conference went on to win the prestigious CGIAR Award for Excellence in Agricultural Science Journalism in 2009. I would not give up writing about agriculture and food security in Africa for anything else. My appetite is insatiable and WRENmedia has kept me hungry to do more!
Kofi Adu Domfeh
Ghana is my homeland but, partly through WRENmedia, I’ve had the opportunity to report from other parts of Africa and the world, mainly covering agriculture, science and the environment. The training and reporting exposure I gained through WRENmedia in the early stages of my journalism career built my skills to better communicate science for development through radio. Currently as the News Bureau Chief (Northern Sector) of TV3 Network Limited and the Ghana Bureau Chief of ClimateReporters.com, I still carry those lessons in my reportage and training of young journalists. During 10 years working in this field, I’ve broadened my work to include print as well as radio, and have been happy to win a number of local and international awards.
Growing up in rural Central Kenya was an enriching experience creatively. But I also witnessed how doing things conventionally year in, year out, especially in farming, leads to a cycle of poverty. That spurred me to be a science communicator, to relay information that challenges the entrenched, conventional ways of thinking. Since joining WRENmedia in 2012 as an African correspondent, I now appreciate that a story is only as good as the impact it has on people. This has brought positive changes to the writing I do for other organisations and publications, like Reuters, Akilah.net and Spore magazine, as well as the documentaries I film.
Having been raised in a farming community and seeing how much information or lack of it determined the lives of the rural farmers, I decided to be the information champion for the forgotten rural population. Over the last five years, reporting from various African countries has given me a sense of motivation and pride in telling the African farmers’ story – and has seen me win seven media awards. I aim to tell a story in the simplest way I can while creating an impact. Working with WRENmedia as a journalist and communication co-trainer has given me a chance to make the connection between policy makers and ordinary farmers. It has also meant growing professionally, by working with a team that is passionate and meticulous about information dissemination.
Having worked as a radio journalist in Uganda for more than five years, I felt I wanted to broaden my skills. In 2008, I met Susanna of WRENmedia in Kampala, who later invited me to a science reporting workshop in Arusha, Tanzania. The training led to me becoming a WRENmedia correspondent and provided me with science reporting skills that I am now proud to apply in training others, and in writing my own stories. I also began working in video, as well as radio and print. When I left Uganda to move back to my home country Kenya in 2011, I created my own company, which not only gives me freedom to work as a freelancer, but also to help upcoming journalists. I feel great pride when I see my African colleagues and friends trained by WRENmedia also winning awards. My most recent project with WRENmedia was making a video about East Coast Fever vaccination for the Global Alliance for Livestock Veterinary Medicines.