African Stories: A guide for journalists on how to tell better stories about Africa

Have you dreamed of seeing your stories paid for and read by a wide audience? This course is offering you that exciting opportunity. Thanks to a unique collaboration with the bird story agency,  you’ll get the chance to pitch your story, get paid and published. bird produces and distributes multimedia stories, designed for a young, mobile-first audience, to Africa’s leading digital news platforms.  Their aim is to shift the narrative about and in Africa away from harmful stereotypes.

By taking this course you’ll be part of a pivotal change taking place in African journalism which looks to offer a new style of storytelling, different to the political, male-dominated news where nuance, accessible language and a human face is all too often missing. Many journalists across Africa are trying to change the one-dimensional narrative that is too often portrayed of an entire continent by international news organisations and, in many instances, by African media itself.  This course will guide you on how you can be part of the change; telling the untold stories through the eyes and lives of ordinary people, and giving them, your audience, agency in their own narrative.

Once you’ve completed the course and have filled in the end of course survey, you will receive a certificate. You will then be able to contact bird story agency to pitch them your story, using the elements you have learned in this course. The pitch is done via email and you will be given the email address at the end of the course. It’s essential therefore that you complete the course thoroughly and you will also need to email them a copy of your certificate to prove you have done it. There is no guarantee your story will be commissioned but if the team at bird likes your idea, it will go through to the next stage in the editorial process. If your story is commissioned, delivered and published, you will get paid for your work.


  • You will learn how to challenge the stereotypical image of Africa and Africans
  • You will learn the importance of understanding your audience
  • You will understand the need to include new voices
  • You will learn how to source and verify stories and information
  • You will learn the key ingredients of storytelling and story structure
  • You will learn new ways of telling stories for digital audiences


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Author: Ruth Kasham

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