Suomi/Africa
Perspectives from Africa,
engagement from Finland
 
 

Understanding Africa

Representing Africans

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Fireworks at Kansalaistori Square, Helsinki, to celebrate a century of Finnish independence (Photo: Finland 100)

Fireworks in Helsinki, to celebrate a century of Finnish independence (Photo: Finland 100)

Suomi/Africa reports on projects and press freedom in Southern Africa

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland is bringing members of a unique network of African, US, UK and Finnish journalists to South Africa, Botswana and Namibia - to visit several cooperation projects between Finland and these nations, which focus on sustainable development and are financed by Finland.

The journalists met again in a media seminar in Kenya 2012 (Photo: Outi Einola-Head)“This is media networking at its best, involving Africa, Finland, London and New York,” says Ms Seija Kinni-Huttunen, Director of Development Communications in the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, who is hosting the visit.

“This unique network includes journalists from 15 different African countries all around the continent. We also have two journalists from New York and London, who follow African issues - as well as several Finnish journalists with us.”

Media skills for the promotion of partnerships

One of the main goals of the visit is to strengthen journalists’ media skills through mutual learning. The group will have internal editorial meetings and discussions about media freedom and other issues of common interest with colleagues and stakeholders. The journalists will also produce stories for their own media outlets.

African journalists in a Finnish forest in September 2011 (Photo Outi Einola-Head)The trip to South Africa, Botswana and Namibia will focus on Aid for  Trade and private sector development. The programme includes visits to  companies, partner organisations and projects that promote poverty  reduction through green growth, job creation and opportunities for  entrepreneurship.

The Suomi/Africa Network was formed in 2011, when the journalists  were invited to Finland to share ideas for a sustainable future. In 2012, the  Network held a media seminar and a workshop in Kenya together with a  number of Finnish journalists. One result of that workshop is the  Network’s web page at http://suomiafrica.org/about-us.html.

The Suomi/Africa website promotes institutional and entrepreneurial initiatives under the theme 'Perspectives from Africa, engagement from Finland'. It is dedicated to promoting the best of Africa and the best of Finnish commitment to the African people. As a representative of commercial and community engagement in Africa, it takes pride in promoting Finnish support for the continent - across all levels of society.

CThe innovative group on the road in Kenyaonnect with the Network The innovative group on the road in Kenya

The journalists will be in South-Africa from Tuesday the 2nd  and Friday the 4th of October. Follwing a day in Botswana, they will be in the Windhoek area from Sunday the 6th to Wednesday the 9th of October.

For possible interviews in Namibia, please contact: Mara Beukes, Embassy of Finland in Windheok, tel. 061-221 355.

For additional information about the Network and the visit, please contact: Seija Kinni-Huttunen, Director, Unit for Development Communications, Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, tel. +358 40 7426629.