This is to invite applications or nominations for interim representatives of national arts journalism chapters to assist in the establishment of formal national chapters and the launch of the continental African Arts Journalists' Network scheduled to take place in February 2011 in Zanzibar.
During the Harare International Festival of the Arts (HIFA) in April, and with the support of Arterial Network and Africalia, 20 arts journalists from 15 African countries met and agreed on the need for a pan-African network of arts journalists to improve the state of arts journalism on the continent through ongoing training, to share experiences and resources, to ensure that news and developments in the African creative sector were being recorded and critically evaluated and to promote and defend independent arts journalism against intrusive economic, political and social pressures.
A Task Team was elected to take further the recommendations for the group and a draft constitution and strategic plan have now been devised. The Task Team has set mid-February as the target date to launch the African Arts Journalists' Network as an independent body, coinciding with the Sauti za Busara music festival in Zanzibar.
Interim country representatives are required to assist the Task Team in recruiting members, identifying existing networks of arts journalists with whom to cooperate and helping to coordinate plans towards the launch. They will play these roles till a national chapter is formed (before the launch) and a country representative is formally elected by members.
More specifically, the roles of interim representatives are
* to develop a national database of at least 25 arts journalists (names, media institution, title, email address, telephone number) currently working in any media (print, radio, television, internet, etc) in your country
* to work with the interim Task Team of the proposed African Arts Journalists' Network to distribute information about the network, its proposed launch and lead-up activities to arts journalists in your country
* to identify other national, regional or continental networks of arts journalists with whom the proposed network should partner
* to help coordinate activities - including the establishment of a national arts journalists chapter - in the build up to the launch in February 2011
If you would like to serve as an interim representative in your country or if you would like to nominate someone to play this role, please send a letter motivating the nomination and a CV of the nominee to Margerie Vacle at Margerie@arterialnetwork.org by Friday 6 August 2010.
The report on the Harare meeting is available on www.arterialnetwork.org