September 16, 2014

Social media for safer communities

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Watch: #EK SE! My Voice, My Safety

frayintermedia is proud to be associated with the #EK SE! My Voice, My Safety initiative. The aim of this pioneering project is to equip Youth Crime Prevention Desk (YCPD) members to strategically use social media in the prevention of crime and violence in there communities. It is a partnership between the Gauteng Department of Community Safety, the South African Police Services (SAPS) and the German Corporation (GIZ).

Women Thought Leadership – Redefining the African Narrative 2014


Frayintermedia has been providing quality journalism training since March 2005.

Founded by veteran journalist and media trainer Paula Fray, it seeks to help build a community of diverse, skilled journalists and communicators across the continent.


Research shows women make up between 17 and 22% of news’ source and are virtually invisible on the opinion pages.  Oped pages drive thought leadership but few women submit and when they do, do so infrequently.  Bloggers are driving traffic to business as people look for authentic voices.

The Women Thought Leadership programme is frayintermedia’s flagship executive education programme. It is designed to address the diverse needs of high level or senior women at board level in business and government empowering them to have a voice in the media and featured as thought leaders.


  • Understanding the media landscape including future trends;
  • Understanding the requirements of various media platforms;
  • Integrating key messages into media interviews;
  • Understanding the power of social media;
  • Presentation skills;
  • Opinion Writing;
  • Social media engagement and
  • On-camera Training.



Engaging the Media with Confidence

The Media Landscape

  • A look at who owns, manages, reads, watches and listens to what in South Africa.
  • Electronic vs print vs online
  • Understanding the Media
  • What is public relations?
  • What is media relations?
  • Why is good media relations important for CCMA?
  • Who are you talking to?

Key Messages – developing your elevator speech

Speaking with confidence: finding voice (expertise)


  • Opinion writing
  • Story structures
  • Building arguments
  • Self-editing
  • Building your profile
  • Selecting media interventions
  • Social media training
  • Building brand


  • Presentation skills
  • Radio and Television Interviewing skills
  • How to use your voice effectively
  • Handling an interview
  • Getting your message across
  • On-camera training (one-on-one feedback)
  • Developing a personal media plan
  • Managing media relationships: SANEF, the Ombudsman, BCCCSA

POST WORKSHOP: Personal coaching (4 X 1hour one-on-one sessions for writing coaching)


  • Women in business at board level
  • Women leaders
  • Corporations that have a high media presence
  • Public Relations practitioners
  • Conference speakers
  • Women in Government communication departments
  • Women in Public sector communication departments
  • Women organizations and associations


  • Understand how the media operate in South African;
  • Train women in leadership how to write engaging opinion columns;
  • Provide innovative and creative techniques when addressing the media;
  • Enhance mentoring and leadership skills which could be incorporated within the organization;
  • Structure and write a thought leadership articles for the media;
  • Cognize how to deliver the company’s key messages to the media within the first 45 seconds of an interview;
  • Give women in leadership positions interview skills to engage the media;
  • Provide guidance in using social media to promote their personal brands;
  • Support women in leadership with mentoring to develop good communication (including writing) habits and
  • Promote content to relevant media.


5th, 6th and 7th May 2014 at Greenwood Manor, 6 Keith Avenue, Lynden


To register for the programme please contact Nevasha Naidoo on tel: (011) 463-8190 / 706-1160; email:


R7 500 excluding VAT per person (includes 3 day training package and post training mentoring).

To be effective, it is important that the participants are permitted to engage the media in either an organizational or personal capacity.


Media expert with development communication speciality and focus on Africa. Strategic manager with change management and leadership experience at corporate, international and local NGO and small business levels. Training experience focused on sub-Saharan Africa with consultancy work in MENA and Asia.  Coach and mentor to media leaders including publishers, editors, business and newsroom managers in Africa.




Amplifying the voice of women leaders


paula-frayCommunication is a core skill for a organisational leaders in the modern era. It requires the ability to sell a vision to an internal staff while influencing an external audience.

Yet research shows that women make up between 17 and 22% of news’ sources. Women are virtually invisible on the opinion pages which drive thought leadership.

With this in mind, frayintermedia has launched its “Women Thought Leadership Programme” to address the diverse needs of high level or senior women in business, public service and non-government organisations.
The first programme will take place from April 2-4, 2014 at Greenwood Manor, Linden, Johannesburg.

“The intense three-day programme with mentoring support seeks to amplify the voice of women leaders in the media. We want to ensure that women’s perspectives are acknowledged as we approach 20 years of celebrating democracy in South Africa,” says MD of frayintermedia, Paula Fray.
Fray added that the programme includes an understanding of the media environment in which business leaders operate, effective usage of media platforms and the ability to craft key messages that meet the needs of the target audience.

The in-depth programme will explore engaging the media with confidence, presentation skills, building and promoting arguments, self-editing and developing a media profile. Candidates will also be exposed social media training and managing media relationships.
“We understand that women leaders have limited time and effective training programmes have to take this into account. In order to ensure a bottom-line impact on the business, the training includes one-on-one mentoring to produce a host of communication tools,” said Fray.
Women in business at board and senior management levels; public relations practitioners; conference speakers; women in government communication departments; women organizations and associations are invited to attend the three-day intense course.

To book, contact Nevasha Naidoo at (011) 706-1160 / 463-8190 or email

Finding stories in the field: HIV storytelling


By Unathi Jobela-

 Despite a perception of audience fatigue, there are still many unreported HIV and AIDS stories, International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) HIV and AIDS Investigative Reporting fellows heard recently.

 The journalists were attending the final training workshop of the year-long fellowship – which includes training, mentoring and field trips. As part of the session, fellows were taken to the Thembalethu Clinic at Helen Joseph Hospital in Johannesburg and The New Start Circumcision Clinic in Tsakane, Erkuleleni – during the final training workshop of the year-long fellowship in September.

 Thembalethu Clinic, which offers comprehensive HIV care including TB integrated services, serves patients across the Gauteng Province and beyond because of its reputation for high quality care, explained site manager Dr Itumeleng Motloung.

 The clinic started with few patients in 2004 and today serves more than 2 400 current patients, said Dr Motloung. In addition, it offered free medical male circumcision including counseling, HIV testing and a high quality circumcision surgery.

 During the subsequent circumcision ward tour, Nontlantla Dube, a team leader at the Male Medical Circumcision (MMC) counselling office, outlined the clinic work, the procedures followed and the various stages of healing.

 Fellows were then taken to the New Start Male Circumcision Clinic in Tsakane where they were welcomed by site manager Millicent Mkantsi who told fellows that the clinic opened in March 2012 to offer medical circumcision as distinct from traditional circumcision.

 “Traditional circumcision sometimes partially removes the foreskin and may not offer the same protection as medical circumcision,” said Doctor Kabasi Mokoto, who noted that the clinic was one of the few research sites for the Prepex – a non-surgical adult circumcision device currently being tested – which was proving popular among patients.

 Two fellows were then able to observe a circumcision and this sparked an online discussion about the presence of women during such a culturally sensitive procedure.

 This issue was picked up during the second day of the fellowship programme when Mail & Guardian Bhekisisa health editor Mia Malan spoken on “Innovative coverage of HIV and AIDS”.

 Presenting the list of top online stories for the newspaper, Malan noted that it disproved the notion that readers did not want indepth storytelling or a focus on issues such as HIV. She noted a number of top stories that dealt indepth with the issue. It was important, she noted, that reporters found the human impact of the story rather than report it as an “AIDS” issue.

 In addition, Malan noted that reporters needed to be able to do multi-platform storytelling. “Even if you are a print reporter, you cannot tell the story in only one medium. You need to be able to tell multimedia stories,” she added.

 Complexity of the HIV story

 The issue of under-reported stories was raised again during a panel discussion on HIV challenges in the health sector. Panellists Savera Kalideen, Jeffrey Misomali  and Umunyana Rugege (Section 27) all urged the reporters to seek HIV stories that recognised the complexity of dealing with the issue in the health sector.

 Misomali noted that the challenges of universal treatment often impacted at health system levels where clinics were often under-equipped to deal with them.

He noted that since the reduction in the cost of antiretroviral treatment drugs in the early 2000’s, countries across the research have scaled up efforts to provide treatment to as many people as possible. However, procuring the ARTs was one thing – being able to get the treatment to clinics across the region and into the hands of patients was another.

 “New patients access HIV treatment and care services within a stretched and ailing health system which often cannot cope with the increased numbers of patients,” he noted.

 In her presentation, Soul City advocacy manager Savera Kalideen outlined the relationship between alcohol and the spread of HIV. She noted that not only did alcohol abuse increase risky behaviour but that it also impacted on the ability to sustain treatment.

 Kalideen also provided case studies of the link between alcohol and violence against women and urged reporters to include a wider range of stories in their storytelling.

 Section 27 attorney Umunyana Rugege pointed to the organisation’s recent findings on the Eastern Cape health system to challenge reporters to follow-up on delivery in the health sector with stories on the allocation and use of funds in the sector.

 The fellowship has constantly challenge fellows to relook at how HIV stories are told.  The 2013 cohort includes 10 fellows. They are: The fellows were: Katharine Child (The Times); Thabisa Dyala (SABC Channel Africa); Hasina Gori (SABC Digital News); Amy Green (Mail & Guardian); Lungi Langa (Isolezwe); Nompumelelo Madlala (Daily News); Biopelo Cynthia Mere (NC Express News); Vuyo Mkize (The Star); Yanga Soji (Daily Sun); and, Siphosethu Stuurman (SABC Online/ Radio).

 “The fellowship has had a huge positive impact in terms of my thinking about HIV related issues and how to report them,” said Mkhize.

 “It has made me more aware of many untold HIV stories,” added Stuurman.

 For more information on the fellowship and fellows go to




Using Social Media for Youth Advocacy


Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+ hangouts, Flicker are buzzwords across the world. But, how do we use them effectively to reach the youth?

This was the challenge at the Soul City and UNFPA training workshop “Social Media Training Workshop for advocacy on Youth Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) and HIV Prevention in Africa” which was facilitated by frayintermedia.

The workshop, which quickly became known by its hashtag #sm4youth, was supported by UNFPA, Norad and Sida and held at the Parktonian Hotel in Braamfontein, South Africa.

Soul City Programme Manager Jenny Button said, “The workshop was a great success – we had excellent support from funders, delegates worked well together and had great fun, and the training and facilitation by frayintermedia ensured that we fulfilled and even surpassed our objectives.”

The training sought to help young activists and youth programme implementers use social media for social and behaviour change communication with both knowledge and skills sessions. These sessions focused on identifying strategic social media platforms as well as developing key messages and related activities to support the implementation of their social media strategies in the various countries.

Almost 70 delegates from across Africa were welcomed by UNFPA OIC regional director Dr Margaret Anyetei before the UNFPA’s Dr Akinyele Dairo outlined the Campaign for Accelerated Reduction of Maternal Mortality in Africa (CARMMA). Dr Dairo noted that the campaign had been launched in 40 countries in Africa but more needed to be done to ensure its message reached everyone including the youth.

Soul City Institute advocacy manager Savera Kalideen presented various approaches to Social Behavior Change Communication (SBCC) with a focus on developing messages around sexual reproductive health and HIV. Her session was complemented by Soul City Institute associate Michael Jana who presented the practical steps needed for SBCC with a particular focus on using formative research to understand the target audience and formulate focused messages.

During the course of the week, various social media practitioners took the participants through skills sessions with activities ranging from creating a blog, using Facebook effectively, creating Googlemaps, to producing soundslides.

Facilitators included frayintermedia’s Paula Fray who focused on social media strategy, message development, project implementation and evaluation, Wits University new and social media expert Dinesh Balliah who focused on the social media landscape as well as tools and Award-winning blogger Saaleha Bamjee who helped with social media tools including how to set up blogs and drive traffic to these sites. Various guest lecturers also assisted with specialist skills and mentoring.

Participants will continue to receive mentoring with the implementation of their social media strategy.

The response from the participants was overwhelmingly positive. “I learnt a lot this week and I will be taking this information and these skills and educate my peers so as to strengthening our campaigns,” said a Zimbabwean participant.

“Thank you for creating such a platform and I loved the workshop and I will be more than glad to share my knowledge with colleagues in my country,” said another.

Using ICTS and social media as advocacy and social mobilisation tools

Group photo

By Nhlanhla Kubeka – Social media and advocacy was the focus of the Open Society Initiative of Southern Africa’s (OSISA) training workshop on how to use ICTS and social media as advocacy and social mobilisation tools in Johannesburg, Sandton in May 2013.

Twenty representatives from women’s rights advocacy organisations from the SADC region gathered at the FNB Conference and Learning Centre to enhance their understanding of social media as a powerful tool to reach and engage their audiences in advocating women’s rights.

The training was organised by OSISA and facilitated by frayintermedia. The workshop focused on social media as a tool to effectively set and manage social media accounts and create a social media strategy that could support advocacy campaigns.

Tsitsi Mukamba from OSISA said: “The training was really empowering. There are so many social media tools that we can use to communicate our messages so that the world can know of the wonderful work that we do in advancing social justice.”

Lead facilitator Dinesh Balliah introduced participants to a range of social media platforms, their advantages and disadvantages and how each could be used in advocacy campaigns. Participants set up Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Flickr, Storify, YouTube and wordpress accounts and were shown how to maintain them.
A practical session with award winning blogger Saaleha Bamjee had participants learn how to use wordpress, set up blogs and websites for their organisations and drive traffic to their sites. There was a special focus on integrating social media on the website.

Guest facilitator Anina Mumm went through a practical session on Storify. This session provided an innovative way on how to use content curation, comments and tweets to share and advocate issues online.

Participants were divided into small groups. Each group compiled a strategy which they presented to demonstrate their understanding of social media platforms.

Feedback was overwhelmingly positive.
“Thank you for putting together such a useful tool for social media advocacy. It was exciting to learn about Storify and WordPress,” said one participant.
“So much information was given that has changed my life and perspective on online advocacy” said another participant.

Digging to find innovative HIV stories


By Wynona Latham - A fresh eye on the story, an in-depth understanding of the issue and innovative storytelling techniques – these are some of the best practices identified by 10 IWMF 2012 HIV/AIDS Investigative Journalism Fellows inSouth Africa.

The International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) Fellows completed their fellowship by presenting their work to their colleagues, mentors, programme speakers and guests. The presentations preceded a discussion on how to increase innovative coverage of HIV/AIDS.

The event marked the end of the fellowship during which the 10 fellows attended a series of investigative reporting workshops, presentations and knowledge-building sessions. Each fellow was mentored by a skilled investigative journalist who assisted them in producing three to four investigative reports.

The IWMF also selected four returning 2011 fellows to support the programme while continuing their investigations.

Keynote speakerMia Malan, Health Editor of the Mail and Guardian, outlined the challenges journalists needed to overcome in order to tell the HIV story effectively.

“No HIV story deserves to be in the media merely because it focuses on a devastating epidemic … it needs to be told in a compelling way.”

For this reason, reporters needed a range of skills including understanding science, policy and data.

“HIV is no longer the story but rather an issue that helps to frame the understanding of other broader issues,” said Malan.

“This is the second annual fellowship and it reinforces the value of sustained skills development combined with mentorship and creation of strong networks,” said frayintermedia managing director Paula Fray who oversees the fellowship implementation inSouth Africa.

IWMF Executive Director Elisa Lees Munoz said: “The IWMF’s methodology, providing long-term training coupled with institutional support and mentoring, provides an excellent platform for sustainable learning on any topic.”

It was noted that one of the problems encountered by the fellows was the lack of willingness of people to come forward as sources.

Harriet Mclea, a health reporter and former IWMF fellow said: “It’s about getting people to talk and having to press on to make those who don’t want to talk, talk. We also have to look hard for the people who are willing to talk.”

Other problems raised included that lack of support, the sexual politics involved in submitting an HIV and Aids story as well as the need to balance indepth reporting with a human interest angle.

The fellows include Mukelwa Hlatshwayo, 3rd degree eTV; Euline Fillis, SABC (Fokus); Tanja Bencun, SABC  (SAfm); Bibi-Ayesha Wadvalla, SABC (Digital News); Ina Skosana, The New Age; Sipho Masombuka, The Times; Sibongile Mashaba, The Sowetan; Bianca Capazorio, Weekend Argus; Nomsa Zwane, Alex FM.

The Rise of Health Journalism

By Wynona Latham

- Greater access to information has changed the role of the health journalist to selector, arbiter and trusted curator – increasing the need for skilled, informed and courageous journalism in the sector.

“Health is propelling itself to a greater degree of prominence,” said Professor Harry Dugmore, Head of the Discovery Health Journalism Centre which was launched in partnership with the Rhodes University School of Journalism in 2010.

According to Dugmore, audiences are demanding more information about, amongst others, health policy, health insurance, medical schemes and how the national health programmes work and this is creating a viable market.

Health journalism can be divided into three categories, says Dugmore.

The first is focused on the politics of health: “It can be about political reporting; about facilities and about how the medical system or local hospitals are operating.” To report on this, “requires quite a specific expertise in terms of understanding the landscape of what the issues are”.

The second category is medical journalism that links for science reporting. This kind of requires the journalistic ability of interpretation in order to translate complex science into the language of the reader. Dugmore says thousands of papers and journals are released each day covering a multitude of medical specialities: “So who makes that accessible to the public? Who does that interpretation?”

There is a need, he says, for journalists to be able to “read the language of science” as well as “making science available and explicable to ordinary people”.

The third category is lifestyle journalism. “It’s about how to live a healthier lifestyle and encouraging people to do more healthy things,” he says.

But the challenge of writing for a lay audience also brings the danger of oversimplification which, in turn, distorts meaning: “You’ve got to simplify; you’ve got to explain; you’ve got to use metaphors; and, you’ve got to use all sorts of techniques to enhance your readers’ understanding,” says Dugmore.

“A lot of things happen to make bad journalism… the main one is just misinterpreting the numbers and when you’re translating statistics into ordinary English, it’s very difficult to make sense of things.”

Dugmore says that this misinterpretation is one of the things that irritates the scientific community. The other is the tendency of some journalist to sensationalize breakthroughs when science, in fact, has an incremental nature: “People might be working for years and building a little more new knowledge each day and (then) a journalist comes and says here’s a breakthrough.”

According to Dugmore, the health journalism standard inSouth Africais very uneven but improving. “I think we’ve seen quite a focus on health journalism in the last five years partly because of the Discovery Health Journalism Awards,” says Dugmore.

There is no doubt that health journalism is burgeoning. Easier access to information has allowed “ordinary people” to seek out information on the internet. And, with this, access to misinformation as well.

This access to information has changed the role of the journalist to selector, abitrar and trusted curator, says Dugmore. The reader needs to know truth from fiction and how that is determined. “We think the only basis has got to be scientific and it’s got to be evidential.”

Developing sources

Dugmore places emphasis on the network of sources to aid in interpreting information. He notes that “there is substantial specialist knowledge that you’ve got to master to be good at it and, as part of that knowledge, there is an additional element which is your networks and your connections that you have to develop to be proficient.”

A health journalist should be able to find a legitimate debate, be as objective as possible and know enough to ask the right questions from their range of sources, says Dugmore.

Despite these various challenges, Dugmore believes that there are real pockets of excellence in South African health journalism. “We’ve been lucky, we’ve got a small group of committed science and health journalists … many of whom do amazing work.”

Dugmore points to the winners of the various categories of the 2012 Discovery Health Journalism awards as the best examples of this excellence. This year the prestigious award for Best Health News Reporting and Discovery Health Journalist of the Year 2011 went to S’thembiso Hlongwane of DRUM magazine for his hard-hitting feature about cancer sufferers in Swaziland who are “Waiting to die” because of lack of treatment.

For more information on the awards, click here:

Gender and Human Rights in HIV and Aids Education

Gender and Human rights in HIV education was the focus of the Canadian Churches in Action (CCA) train the trainer workshops outside Johannesburg, South Africa in January 2012.

About 30 representatives from various church groups in southern and central Africa gathered at the Good News Convention Centre with the aim of promoting men’s meaningful participation in HIV and AIDS Education.

Organised and facilitated by frayintermedia on behalf of the CCA from January 23-27,  the workshop’s curriculum sought to help partner organisations impact on the attitudes and behaviours of men and women by using gender and human rights concepts in HIV and AIDS education.

This session follows other workshops held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and Benoni, South Africa, earlier in 2010 and 2011. Three participants from these TOT workshops were invited to co-facilitate in South Africa.

The workshop included training facilitation skills, understanding gender mainstreaming, incorporating human rights into HIV and AIDS work.

Storify training

Participants at the Advanced Social Media Workshop on November 8 were taken through the principles and best practices of content curation using social media. As part of a short practical exercise, they submitted the following curated content using Storify.