Team Oyeniyi interviewed
Team Oyeniyi have been interviewed. Not by the mainstream media, so don’t go getting all excited for us just yet! Through the strange channels of modern technology I happened to connect with Jill Singer, who asked me if the children would be interested in being interviewed for a university assignment. Jill is a lecturer in television journalism at RMIT, a Melbourne university. The topic was originally to be about the children’s development of the concept of “race”. The students, upon learning more about us, decided to broaden the scope of their project to a profile of the whole family.
Last night was spent in front of the camera answering questions. Miss O 2, normally one of the noisiest members of the team, became remarkably quiet when speaking into the microphone, which surprised me. We tried to encourage her to sing “Rolling in the Deep” on camera, but she couldn’t be persuaded!
Why did we agree to be interviewed? Journalism plays a huge part, in this country and many others, in shaping public opinion. Some journalists write objective articles about asylum seekers and refugees. Others write articles in a tone that can only be considered to be fanning the fires of moral panic. We felt if we had the opportunity to show aspiring journalists a small window into the realities, to add to their education in what we hope was a positive way, when they graduate and are out in the world chasing the news stories of the day they will be better equipped to write objectively on these topics: to not let their opinions be swayed by the “popular” media tone of the time. The two students seemed very level headed to me and I have every faith they will be a credit to their profession in years to come.
I wish I could claim to be totally altruistic, but I don’t expect anyone to believe I am. There were ulterior motives: perhaps, through some co-incidence of a “six degrees of separation” connection, such an activity might lead to a literary agent or better. I also think it was a very good learning experience for the children. Both Mr O and I have appeared on TV screens before in our respective countries, but the children had no prior experience of media interaction.
I asked for, and was granted, permission to write about this particular university assignment and we will ultimately be given a copy of the finished product to share with our readers. Of course, I’d prefer to be back to my normal “pre-battle” weight before appearing on camera, but that just hasn’t happened with such a busy 10 months. Such is life!
Stay tuned! I’ll introduce our interviewers at a later time!
Jill enjoys a lively career and has received several awards for her work. I’ve read her columns and sometimes I agreed and other times I didn’t. I don’t expect to agree with columnists all the time! Jill’s had a difficult year. Her husband, Peter, suffered a terrible stroke in 2011 and Jill was recently ”boned” by a paper for which she had been a columnist for many years. In this article, written last year, Jill shares some of her experiences for the Stroke Foundation.
In the course of a single day they’d been transformed from vibrant, intelligent, independent and productive people into men with serious disabilities.
The Stroke Foundation does amazing work and as Jill’s article shows, strokes don’t discriminate. I’ve digressed totally from the topic of Team Oyeniyi being interviewed: support the Stroke Foundation, or your local stroke organisation, if you can. I have a relative by marriage that had a stroke many years ago, so I also know how devastating a stroke can be.