Forging ahead with fictional endeavours: ~ Write a life on a page and hurry not to its grave; abhor not the coming age, for eternal is the next page. ~ Read what you will, I hope you will enjoy reading as much as I do writing.

Posts tagged ‘Journalism’

Here comes Christmas!

volunteerday

Just in case you were not aware: CHRISTMAS is here. Or so the stores would have you believe. If they had their way you’d start shopping after Easter. Of course that has affected which articles are being published. This one to the left has been the last one to be published for this year so far.  The last few weeks it seems they have been converting much of their broadsheet space to advertising spots or making way for the Christmas theme.  I’ve noticed only a few columns are being published the past few weeks and all of them are about *Christmas*, directly or indirectly.  With luck my next article (that I still have to write) will make the cut. It’s a community piece focus on The Multicultural Playgroup’s Christmas Party. Fingers Crossed. 🙂

The only other writing I’ve down this week has been for my first assessment for one of my modules. The Presentation worked out really well so I thought I’d share it to – WWDPass1. The purpose was to share our experience, state our learning goals, and write a reflective comment on why it is important for human services workers to know how to work with diverse populations.  I thought it was a silly question!

Win, our Annual meeting

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The Advocate, 16th Nov 2015

I have to say with this article: You Win a Few, You Lose a Few.  My article went down well with the Win team (at least as far as I was told), but somehow never made it into The Advocate as my version.  Instead of using the article I wrote the editors chose to make space for a photo and essential rip the dialogue from the company flyer.  😀 I didn’t think it was as potent as my version but it was much more succinct, and boiled it down to the main point – an invitation for all to get involved in the team.  The version in the Advocate will be available here until the 22nd of Nov. I actually didn’t have a problem with how they have chosen to present the story.  It just was one of those moments where I thought ‘Hmmm, it would be nice to have direct communication with the paper Editors.’ After all, I could have re-written it. 🙂 It was also a new learning chance.  They have altered it because their version drew more attention to the story. I feel as though I learn something every time they alter my work or take my story and put a different spin on it.

This my article:

On the 23th of Nov WIN holds their Annual General Meeting with all Management Committee positions up for re-election. The current Committee has extended an invitation to local community members from a diversity of backgrounds to participate, in the hope that many more passionate, experienced individuals will become involved in the organisation as Committee chairs. Community members are further encouraged to take part in the nominations and vote in this valuable chance to have their say in the future direction of the organisation. Win’s Committee strives to maintain an influx of new ideas brought about by a refreshed management, while putting their best candidates forward to represent the not-for-profit organisation. Win’s dedication to advocacy of multicultural rights and integration includes deep ties with remaining relevant to both their current members and the wider community.

Thus far this has been a highly successful approach, with Win winning the 2015 Premier’s Multicultural Awards with the youth group GYCD, while securing an ever increasing amount of funding for future programmes. Win already has several successful new programmes under their belt after a cooperative effort with local organisations such as GAPDL and CQU. These programmes include the Communities for Children’s Multicultural Playgroup, The Circle of Security Parenting Program that assists local parents to develop new childcare strategies, and the Skilling Queenslanders for Work program that offers free training for 14 individuals to reach a Certificate 3 in Early Childhood Education and Care Services. These programmes have been no small feats, however Win pushes forward to create fresh programmes to further support our local region.

 

Reporting…Reprt-*freezes*

I’ve been quite busy with my journalist adventures this past 2 weeks.  I wrote a piece on the Halloween bash of the playgroup I volunteer with that actually drew the attention of the local Observer, the parent paper of the Advocate in which my articles are published.  As a result my article was heavily paraphrased by a senior journalist and published in the Observer on the 6th of Nov.  I should be a little annoyed that I was not quoted as a source, but it was paraphrase so well I couldn’t feel it; I was also elated that my story had got that much attention.  It was great for the charity, WIN, and for the Multicultural Playgroup.  Even better, they still ran my article in the advocate on the 9th.

On Friday the 30th the Multicultural Playgroup opened it’s doors to a horde of monsters for their Halloween bash. The happy assortment of creatures took a break from their normal routine with a costume party. The days activities included a craft session with copious amounts of glitter, and a witches cauldron full of eyes, insects and goop. There was also slimy spaghetti worms to be squished, and small haunted house for the little ones. A few children even added to their costumes with face paint. Not even family members could resist joining in the gooey fun. This Halloween celebration arranged by Marie Daix, WIN’s Project officer, and Debbie Flaherty, of Playgroup QLD, went down just as well as the tasty featured treat – banana-ghosts that were quickly fashioned (and eaten) by little hands.

Of course, the popular celebration is not just a favourite with kids and families in Australia. Halloween is now one of the more widespread celebrations globally; celebrated not just in the western cultures, but in various Asian, European, and middle-eastern areas. It is know under a variety of different titles, such as ‘the hungry ghost festival’ in China and Singapore, ‘All souls day’ in Italy and ‘Noć vještica’ in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Though each celebration contains it’s own unique style, each is celebrated for the similar purpose at the same time of year. This makes Halloween a frighteningly fun way to break down cultural barriers by engaging in a little harmless horror.

It is a great feeling to have some of my writing published outside my own blog. 🙂  It has also brought more attention to a local charity I think the community really needs. After the Halloween articles the Observer did a further two pieces about other projects WIN has created.  It actually feels like I made a difference.

However, I aware more then ever how important a continued media presence so I’m trying to do two articles a week for the next few weeks because I will be starting my Master’s soon and will likely have to reduce my frequency of publication.

What-to-remember from the Journalism newbie

The issue with news articles is…

They are subject to bias, and editor demands. The articles I currently write are for ‘Welcoming Intercultural neighbors Inc.’ (who use ‘WIN’ despite the fact that it is also a major news network here.). As such my articles wind up subject to two bouts of editing.  First by WIN, who have their own agenda, and then by the advocate editors, who decided its worthiness and are liable to cut out extra ‘fluff’ or superfluous subject matter.  I was more aware of this when I took the role so I’ve always kept articles short and sent them in an extra day early so that if the ladies at WIN decide they want changes I have some extra time to alter the article.

This week this tactic proved it’s worth.  My original article (here) landed back in my inbox with this extra info added.

…WIN steps in to bridge the gap with this upcoming employment workshop facilitated by Lyndal Hansen and Donna Burton from Many Rivers as a guest speaker, both with expert knowledge of the Gladstone labour market and cultural differences.

Within her 14 years as a Director and Lead Consultant for Amarna, Lyndal Hansen has managed a number of large scale projects, as well as building her business.

Donna will introduce Many Rivers Microfinance Limited (Many Rivers), a not-for-profit organisation that supports aspiring business owners with microenterprise development support and access to finance in order to see the potential of people and communities realised.

This interactive workshop is aimed at educating workers about the Australian employment system while giving much needed advice about anything from job seeking to resumes and interview expectations.

This pressure to find employment…

A lot of this is good and belongs in the article. However, it demanded a rewrite because of the clear difference in writing styles and the lack of concision.  Some of is, perhaps, superfluous to the ‘news worthiness’ but they wanted it so I worked it in.  I ended up with this –

With unemployment in Gladstone reaching a 5.1% high not seen since 2013 the pressure is on for job-seekers. Yet local employment agencies are not fully equipped to deal with our communities diverse migrant labour force, whose needs cannot be met purely through translation services. WIN steps in to bridge the gap with their upcoming Employment Workshop facilitated by Lyndal Hansen, Director and Lead Consultant for Armarna, and featuring Donna Burton, from non-profit organisation Many Rivers, as a guest speaker; both of whom have an expert knowledge of the Gladstone labour market and the impact of cultural differences.

During WIN’s interactive workshop Lyndal will share wisdom garnered from her 14 years managing large scale projects alongside building her own business, while Donna introduces Many Rivers Microfinance Limited: a project devoted to assisting aspiring business owners with microenterprise development, and accessing essential financial support in order to achieve the full potential of individuals and communities. Though the workshop is aimed at educating workers about the Australian employment system and providing advice about anything from job-seeking techniques to resumes and interview expectations, the workshop achieves much more by providing the knowledge of what help is available to those who need it.

This help could not come at a better time. Australia is in need of a skilled workforce yet in the push to be gainfully employed migrants often settle for jobs below their skill level. This is commonly the result of a lack of sufficient knowledge to cross-over their existing skill sets and experience into Australian terminology. It is here that WIN’s workshops show their true benefits, assisting migrants to re-frame their capabilities to suit the Gladstone labour market.

WIN host their next workshop on the 5th of November at their office Tank st. Interested parties are urged to contact the office on 0487 422 142/ 07 4903 1931 or admin@win-australia.org.au to secure a place.

I managed to sort out the issue I had with the opening lines, which is great!  But, even though I really tried to get the flow back, the article now really feels like a patchwork quilt.  There’s bits I know I could take out and still achieve the same aim.  It’s also a bit on the long side and I feel that if it is used it will most likely  be cut by a good 50-100 words.

I wonder, is it really a learning experience if you predicted that something like this might happen? ‘:) I will certainly try to make a list of an extra questions I need to ask in future, and possible bank up some extra articles just in case ones not going to make the cut in time.

Skills re-claimed

There is nothing worse for the writing process the a sense of lethargy and a  teen.  I wasn’t sure I was going to make deadline for this weeks article because I’ve been woefully out of it because of tiring myself out volunteering for the Multicultural playgroup (the subject of my last article) and for the RSPCA adoption day.  Better yet, this afternoon when I attempted to start the new article proper, my teenage sister was left with me and insisted on interruptions every minute (not an exaggeration!) Blew my patience, and my ability to concentrate right out the window.  So I gave up and took her (and the dogs) for a walk before I blew my stack.  I’m actually surprised I finished writing this one tonight…

Local unemployment has risen 1.4% since last September, reaching a high of 5.1% not seen since 2013. The pressure for job-seekers is on. Yet local employment agencies are not fully equipped to deal with our communities diverse migrant labour force, whose needs cannot fully be met purely through translation services. WIN Inc. steps in to bridge the gap with employment workshops run by multilingual specialists with expert knowledge of the Gladstone labour market. Their 5 hour workshop is aimed at educating workers about the Australian employment system while giving much needed advice about anything from resumes to interview expectations.

Australian culture has a firm belief that migrants ‘earn their keep’. This pressure to find employment mean migrants often settle for jobs below their skill level at at time when we need skilled labourers. This is often the result of a lack of sufficient knowledge to cross-over their existing skill sets and experience into Australian terminology. It is here that WIN Inc.’s workshops show their true benefits, assisting migrants to re-frame their capabilities to suit the Gladstone labour market.

WIN Inc. host their next workshop on the 5th of November at their office Tank st. Interested parties are urged to contact the office on 0487 422 142/ 07 4903 1931 or admin@win-australia.org.au to secure a place.

I’m not entirely happy with this one; I wish I could have come up with a better entrance line. However it is entirely representative of the local state of affairs and leads to a logical comment on the article focus sooo… I should be pleased it links nicely and leave it as it is.

Published!!

IMG_20151026_210102736My News Article was published! They’ve cut off the last paragraph (which was just contact info for the playgroup) and have left out my by line; but that’s all they’ve done. The rest is unaltered – it was fit for press use. ^_^

Now to write this weeks one… bleargh… I now have a standard bar…

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