Media Monitoring Africa (MMA) is proud to give a GLAD[i] to News24 for its article titled, “Talented teenager tees off to double ton” (29/01/2019) which highlights a 13-year-old boy’s achievements and accesses him for his views.
The article tells the story of Yaaseen Moos who plays cricket for his school, Wynberg Boys’ High and belongs to the St Augustine’s Cricket Club. The journalist, Earl Haupt, notes that on 18 January, 2019, Yaaseen scored an incredible “203 not out against Groote Schuur High” in an under 15 game. The child is also reported to have “captained the WP under 13B team last year”. The journalist writes that Yaaseen has already managed to score five centuries for both his school and club.
The child is quoted saying, “I was four-years-old when my dad took me to my first mini cricket match … To see the hard work materialise into results inspires me to continue working harder.”
The hardworking and ambitious child is also quoted talking about how he has set his sights on playing first team for his school, South Africa Under 19 and the Cobras Cubs side. “From there I would love to represent my country.”
The journalist reports on Yaaseen’s story in a way that puts the child as the central focus and places great emphasis on his achievements as a cricket player. Of importance is also the fact that the journalist gives the child a voice on an important story about him. The story is accompanied by a picture of Yaaseen playing cricket.
In 2016, MMA’s research showed that only 12% of stories about children accessed children for their views.[ii] It is for this reason that MMA awards this story a GLAD because the journalist challenges this pattern of not including children’s voices in stories about them.
We encourage News24 to continue to access children’s views in media coverage, when it is in their best interest to do so. This allows for the inclusion of their perspective and voices.
By Phakamile Khumalo
[i] A GLAD refers to an article where the rights and welfare of children have been promoted.