The Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism (WSCIJ) has inducted 12 new fellows into its Report Women Fellowship.
The Report Women is a Female Reporters Leadership Programme (FRLP) Fellowship aimed at supporting and mentoring female journalists, equipping them with leadership skills and positioning them to take on leadership opportunities in their respective media organizations.
The fellows, who were selected from a pool of over 170 applicants, are from different media organizations across Nigeria.
They were trained by veteran journalists and mentors from the WSCIJ and other organizations.
The WSCIJ’s Report Women Fellowship Programme has a strong track record of producing impactful investigative reports that have influenced policy changes, sparked public discourse, and raised awareness about crucial gender-related issues.
The top three fellows were also awarded at the induction ceremony with Blessing Oladunjoye, Publisher of BONews, claiming the award for the overall best fellow while Sarah Ayeku and Folasade Ogunrinde won runner-up and second runner-up awards.
Speaking at the induction ceremony, the Executive Director of the WSCIJ, Motunrayo Alaka, noted that this year’s cohort has addressed mentorship gaps for female journalists, rekindled the aspirations of journalism and communication students in journalism as a career path, produced a research report on the impact of mother female journalists working in Nigerian newsrooms and revived the press clubs of two secondary schools.
“Remarkably, the 2023 cohort’s stories have spurred real-world change. Some compassionate Nigerians supported funds to provide accommodation for an indigent mother of six that a member of the 2023 cohort encountered on traditional birth attendants in the southeast, while another story catalysed financial support for survivors of the Owo Church attack from the government in the south-west.
“Also, cash donations were received from individuals for internally displaced women interviewed in one of the stories in the north-west. Other reports from the cohort underscored accountability in women and girls-focused policies and reprod laws especially in surrogacy, shed light on challenges faced by women in sports as athletes and leaders: demanded justice for victims of sexual and gender-based violence,” she said.
Aside from doing impactful reports, the 12 fellows also embarked on leadership projects.