Fellowship experience: WanaData journalism fellowship on Covid-19 vaccination.
By Flora Bossey
I am a woman journalist based in Edo, State, South-South Nigeria and have been a member of Wanadata for over two years. I have attended so many physical and online training delivered by Wanadata and Code For Nigeria.
I heard about the Wanadata Covid 19 Fellowship through an email notification and I sent in my story pitch.
I found the subject of the Fellowship interesting as it had to do with the Pandemic which is challenging the world at the moment. Nigeria belongs to the Third world countries that do not have the technological know-how to produce the vaccine. However, through the generosity and magnanimity of global organisations and Western countries, Nigeria has received the vaccine freebof charge. The country has a number of challenges which has impacted its ability to efficiently utilise the vaccine. This need to amplify these challenges informed my choice of the two stories that were accepted and gave me the chance to be a part of this Fellowship.
A combination of methods was utilized while a mentor was appointed to work with me on finding data suitable for the story. On my part, I used interview and secondary data from WHO and the Nigeria Bureau of Statistics websites to find background information for the stories.
My mentor worked with me to identify the data set that support the stories as well as designed the visualization which was embedded in the story.
The Mentor appointed to guide me worked on the data set showing the total number of Vaccines that have arrived in the country since the start of the vaccination exercise. There was also data to show the number of vaccines administered by the state. The second story also showcased the data on unemployment in Nigeria before and after the Pandemic. The visualization was done by my mentor.
This fellowship afforded me the opportunity of sitting down with a medical professional to understand the way vaccines are distributed in Nigeria. I also got the opportunity to refresh my knowledge on how to do visualization which presents the story in an easy to understand and pleasant manner.
I learnt how to partner with a mentor who has extensive knowledge of Data to produce a rich story on a topical issue.
There has been a high level of vaccine hesitancy in Nigeria. The central of the stories was to bring to light those issues that impact negatively on the public perception of the vaccine. It was to shed some light on the issue of conspiracy theories and fake news surrounding the vaccine and to get people to take advantage of the magnanimity of other countries who have provided these vaccines for free.