Media Monitoring Africa (MMA) is proud to award eNCA with a GLAD for an interview of a child author who had added her voice to the Covid-19 pandemic. The GLAD is also awarded for how the journalist, Slindelo Masikane conducted the interview.
The interview clip titled, “COVID-19 through the eyes of a child” aired on an eNCA program called, South African Morning on the 8th of November, 2020. This interview involves a child reportedly with “a life-threatening autoimmune disease known as hypogammaglobulinemia” who has used her Covid-19 pandemic experience to encourage children on how to cope through her published book. Her book is called “Inside” and is “a snapshot of COVID-19 through a child’s eyes”.
Slindelo Masikane chats with Laena-Mae Turner who is eight years old about her book and the child says, “I read books all the time but I didn’t like the characters in those books. So I wanted to write my own book and get to create my own characters. “
Watching the video, one can see how comfortable the journalist made the child feel, allowing her to speak comfortably and voice out her views on the pandemic and how it affected her.
MMA’s Editorial Guidelines and Principles for Reporting on Children in the Media urge journalists stating, “A child should always be interviewed in a safe, comfortable and non-threatening environment.” This is important because it ensures that the child, such as in this case, expresses her views freely. It also potentially allows for the journalist to get the most out of the child in terms of perspectives and opinions.
MMA applauds the journalist for this interview and for providing a platform for a child to add their voice to a global pandemic. An MMA 2020 media monitoring exercise revealed that only 7% of stories on children included their voices and so to have this story told with the child’s voice is commendable as it goes against the trend observed.
Well done Slindelo Masikane and eNCA!
By Baatile Mohale
 A GLAD is awarded when a journalist reports on a child responsibly and promotes her best interests
 Findings will be available soon on www.mediamonitoringafrica.org.za