Telling the Stories of African Women

n this week's podcast Leyla to journalist Mukelwa Hlatshwayo about telling the stories of the diversity of African women as a journalist. Continue Reading Telling the Stories of African Women

Welcome to the 216th episode of the award-winning Diverse Minds podcast.  It’s Black History Month. This year’s theme of ‘Saluting our Sisters’ highlights the crucial role that Black women have played in shaping history, inspiring change, and building communities. To join me on the show today is Mukelwa Hlatshwayo, to talk about telling the stories of African women across the continent through journalism.

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About my guest

Mukelwa Hlatshwayo is an award-winning Nairobi-based journalist, covering general news in East Africa.

As a journalist with more than 15 years of experience, she has covered a wide range of news items such as conflict, crime, and climate change. Mukelwa has reported for various international media houses including Sky News, France24, Al Jazeera, New York Times, and is currently the senior producer for Reuters, East Africa. 

Mukelwa began her career reporting current affairs for one of South Africa’s then flagship current affairs show, 3rd Degree, in 2006. From then she moved to the New York Times in their Southern Africa bureau, a position that initiated her journey reporting to global audiences. 

The news beat closest to her heart is women and children. This has taken her to the heart of Johannesburg’s inner-city reporting on illegal backstreet abortions, hijacked buildings, and stories of survivors of what was called “corrective rape”.

In today’s show on Telling the Stories of African Women

  • About Mukelwa and what she’s working on at the moment. [02:51]
  • The way she copes with the pressures of her work. [07:12]
  • Her journey to becoming a journalist. [12:40]
  • Mukelwa’s thoughts on giving Black women a platform to be heard globally. [14:28] 
  • Her top three mental health tips. [33:14]

Quotes on Telling the Stories of African Women

  • I was about seven years old when I told my mum I wanted to become a journalist.
  • It’s not easy for people to tell you their stories.
  • It’s important to approach people as equals, no matter where you are.
  • Oftentimes, we misunderstand why people are angry, we really need to listen.
  • Being a journalist you are not really a civilian and not part of the Government. So, finding that balance can be difficult.

Resources on Telling the Stories of African Women

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Remember to tune in next week, where I’ll bring you more insights on mental health and inclusion.

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