Venter Mwongera

Ms Mwongera has over 15 years’ experience in integrated communications, public relations, and projects management. She has a knack for news, a passion for storytelling and a prolific photographer. She has won many Awards for excellence in Data Journalism, human interest stories awarded by Kenya Media Programme (KEMEP), Media Council of Kenya (MCK) and CNN for Africa category.

Prior to her appointment, she worked as the Editorial and Programs Manager Consultant at the Association of Media Women in Kenya (AMWIK). Previously, Ms Mwongera worked as a Programs and Communications Manager, Journalism Trainer and Chief Editor for local, regional and international organizations like International Association of Women in Radio and Television (IAWRT), Internews in Kenya, Environmental Research, Mapping Information Systems in Africa (ERMIS), Africa Science News Service (ASNS) and Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC). She also published her work with International Press Service (IPS), The Dubling Mum and The Star Newspaper.

Her expertise to formulate various themes for social and behaviour change cuts across all the previous tasks she handled. As the Chief-Editor, she recruited and mentored prolific writers, Sub-Editors, Editors, Designers and Publishers who produced excellent publications and content for other online communication channels.

Among other successful assignments Ms Mwongera celebrates are;

• Mindset change for equal gender representation in leadership positions- As a Consultant Chief Editor for AMWIK’s publications, she spearheaded campaigns to sensitize the public about the Two-Third (2/3) Gender Rule which led to an increase in the number of women politicians in parliament from 16 to 86 in March 4th, 2013 General Election;

• End to Online Gender-Based Violence- As the Communications Manager and Chief-Editor for all the organisations communication channels, Ms Mwongera led different organisations including the Judiciary, Kenya Police Gender Desk Department, KHRC, KNHRC, the Media, COVAW, Communication Authority of Kenya (CAK), Kenya ICT Action Network (KICTANet), Internet Service Providers (ISPs) including Safaricom, Celtel, Yu, Orange, among others to not only sensitise the public about the vice but also formulated policies to curb propagation of cyberbullying. These yielded fruits in that bills were jointly formulated, discussed in the parliament and some were ratified as laws to restraint proliferation of cyberbullying. Both public and private sector organisations undertook an obligation to control bullying posts (pulling them down) on their websites. Further, broadcasting of hate speech and cyberbullying has tremendously decreased since culprits are tracked by ISP providers and the Judiciary (courts) are charging the perpetrators.

• The practice of Responsible Journalism: As a Conflict Journalism Trainer at Internews, Ms Mwongera is happy with the training and mentorship she offered to the practising journalists to end embedded journalism practices which were one of the highlights to 2007 PEV as captured by Prof. Philip Waki’s reports. Due to an embrace of responsible journalism practices, March 4th General Elections had dismally low cases of violence and the elections results were termed as credible.

Ms Mwongera is the Chairperson for Journalists for Development, Acting Chairperson for the Supervisory Committee, AMWIK Sacco, a former Board member for AMWIK, Editors’ Guild, a member of Kenya Journalists Association (KeJA), the Kenya Union of Journalists (KUJ) and former Treasurer for IAWRT.

Ms Mwongera is currently pursuing her PhD in Development Communication at Daystar University. She holds a Master of Science in Communication, majoring in development Communication at JKUAT, Bachelor of Communications majoring in Development Communication, Diplomas in photojournalism, Journalism and Media Studies at Institute of Commercial Management (ICM) in UK and Diploma in ICT with a bias in Data Journalism and Project Management. Other short courses pursued are; Strategic Communication and Management, Leading Strategically, Leading the team for Impact, Coaching for greater effectiveness from Centre for Creative Leadership (CCL) in Brussels, Belgium.