Two Fil-Aussies are included in the twelve outstanding individuals who have been selected to join Community Voice, an initiative from the Judith Neilson Institute and Media Diversity Australia giving under-represented Australians a greater voice in our national conversation. The successful participants are Joy Adan and Michael Camit.
Participants were chosen from a strong field of more than 80 applicants. Each has a close connection with their local communities and the group reflects ethnic, religious and socio-economic diversity and different political and cultural outlooks.
Joy Adan is a writer, journalist, artist and podcast host. She is an active member of her church community and hosts ‘At the Well’, a podcast for Catholic women. In 2020, she received a Creative Arts Grant from Blacktown City Council to create an art anthology based on stories from the local community.
Michael Camit is a health literacy and multicultural health communication expert, with more than 20 years’ experience in the NSW public health system. His health literacy work helps marginalised communities navigate the health system. Michael has worked on numerous award-winning campaigns including the Pink Sari Project, which increased breast screening in South Asian women in NSW. Michael has completed a PhD in Public Communication at UTS.
JNI Director of Education Andrea Ho said Community Voices will help more people with different experiences and views to be heard in the media.
“JNI has chosen through Community Voices to invest in training and supporting Australians from a wide range of underrepresented communities, by teaching them skills to engage confidently and articulately with the news media,” she said.
“By training participants in how to be better media contributors, we give journalists access to a more diverse range of community voices, leading to stories that look and sound more like Australia as it is today.”
MDA Director and co-founder Antoinette Lattouf said the program is unique in that it will be run over 12 months, with training and education from media experts — but also practical industry experience.
“Our media has a long way to go in terms of being representative of our increasingly diverse population,” Ms Lattouf said.
“It’s not only about having more journalists of different ethnic backgrounds, but it also matters who newsrooms turn to for comment, which voices they include and elevate.”
The year-long program will give participants comprehensive training in different mediums, including radio, TV, print and digital media.
They will learn how to pitch themselves to the media and manage the challenges that come with having a public profile.
Participants will work closely with the project leads, as well as media identities, trainers and experts from across the industry.
The program is led by an experienced team, including Jim Carroll, a former Director of News and Current Affairs at SBS, senior journalist and Director of Media Diversity Australia Antoinette Lattouf, and Ky Chow, a freelance journalist, media consultant and Professional Development Director at Media Diversity Australia.
[Photos from JNI Website]