Andile Nomabhunga, left, and Dunisani Ntsanwisi, journalists visiting the News from South Africa, met Mayor Pam Conine after watching her and dozens of other villagers perform in the Senior Center’s flash mob on Wednesday, May 31. The South African journalists spent a week working alongside the staff of the Yellow Springs News. (Photo by Reilly Dixon)

Yellow Springs News Hosts South African Journalists


During Memorial Day week, May 29–June 2, the staff of the Yellow Springs News got the chance to visit with and learn from two journalists and publishers of newspapers in South Africa.

Andile Nomabhunga, of Matatiele, in the Eastern Cape Province, and Dunisani Ntsanwisi, of Giyani, in Limpopo Province, spent the week working with the News as part of a three-week fact-finding project investigating ways to boost the sustainability of South Africa’s community media.

The project is the combined effort of Ohio University’s Scripps School of Journalism and Institute for International Journalism and the Association of Independent Publishers, or AIP, a South African organization that aims to support independent news outlets in South Africa. As of this year, the AIP has about 150 news media outlets as members; according to the AIP’s website, some of the member organizations are “one-person operations that operate literally at grassroots level,” while others are  “15 staff members strong and have offices on three floors.”

Nomabhunga and Ntsanwisi are two of 10 delegates selected by the AIP from more than 60 applicants to take part in the project, which began on the campus of Ohio University during the week of May 22–26. That week included presentations from journalism educators and independent news proprietors from the U.S. and from the AIP delegates, as well as workshops.

AIP delegates split up to spend the second week with six independently owned Ohio news organizations. Besides the Yellow Springs News, other outlets selected to take part in the project were The Daily Standard, based in Celina; Mansfield’s Richland Source; Ohio Capital Journal; Columbus Underground; and Logan-Hocking Times.

While in Yellow Springs, Nomabhunga and Ntsanwisi also met with Village Manager Josué Salmerón and Mayor Pam Conine — and were surprised to learn that the latter often rides a bike to work, saying that mayors in their municipalities are often accompanied by a security detail. Likewise, the staff of the News was treated to a brief video chat with Mayor Sonwabile Mngenela of Matatiele.

Following their time in the village, the two were set to return to Athens for another week of presentations and workshops.

Sharing similar struggles

The following section was written by Nomabhunga and shared with the News for publication:

Love of journalism, together with the support of the community, is what is keeping us going. It is also what makes us see the importance of producing our newspaper.

This is the view of the team of journalists that publish a newspaper called the Yellow Springs News in the United States of America.

Continue reading over at Yellow Springs News.

By Lauren “Chuck” Shows and Andile Nomabhunga

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