Sports journalists trained ahead of Kip Keino Classic on Saturday

Sports Journalists Association of Kenya President James Waindi (left) and Secretary General Moses Wakhisi with Absa Asset Management Head Elizabeth Irungu during a financial wellness session with sports journalists in Nairobi to mark the financial literacy month in April on April 15, 2024. [STAFFORD ONDEGO,Standard]

The fifth edition of Absa Kip Keino Classic, a World Athletics Continental Tour Gold, will be held at Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi on Saturday.

Some of the trailblazing locals set to light up the championship are Commonwealth Games 100m champion Ferdinand Omanyala, world 800m champion Mary Moraa and world 800m silver medalist Emmanuel Wanyonyi.

Internationally, Olympics 200m silver medalist Kenneth Bednarek of the USA and the 2016 Olympics javelin champion Thomas Rohler of Germany will be among the other star attractions.

During the contest, athletes will compete at Gold level events earning both prize money and world ranking points. The annual tour launched in 2020 is already taking shape as a world-class showdown.

To ensure the global showpiece is properly beamed across the world, title sponsors Absa Bank Kenya, who have given Sh40 million for this year’s edition, and Sports Journalists Association of Kenya (SJAK) have taken sports scribes through paces on how to cover the event.

The journalists have been imparted with valuable technical tips and skills to ensure the coverage is flawless.

In addition, Absa Bank has taken the scribes through a financial wellness session. This was done during the Financial Literacy Workshop held on Monday at a Nairobi hotel.

The seminar, in line with the bank's tagline 'Your Story Matters', corresponds with the international financial literacy month of April.

The journalists have been sensitised against unnecessary expenditure as they seek to build their income pillar.

“Never ever make any investment decision in haste. You should always spread your portfolio across multiple asset classes, bonds, equities, offshore property and real estate among others facets. In every income that you receive, do your due diligence and shift money in line with the set personal goals, assets allocation and micro economic development,” said the bank's Head of Asset Management Elizabeth Irungu.

Irungu called on the sports media practitioners in the country to strive living within their means as they purpose to protect their revenue streams.

The workshop comes at a time when the media industry in the country is struggling to meet its financial obligations amidst massive job cuts. The seminar also trained the journalists on investments, retirement, saving, spending, insurance, banking and the bank’s sports sponsorship initiatives.

Peter Waweru, the Head of Brand and Marketing at Absa Bank Kenya, and Mutwiri Mutuota, Sports Lead at CGTN were among the other speakers at the pre-championship media seminar alongside veteran sports photojournalist Stafford Ondego and James Mwamba.

Mutuota underscored the need for a robust sports media welfare programme, adding: “We are living in an environment where constrained earnings and opportunities in the media is causing many journalists- especially those working in sports- to slide further down into poverty.”

“Many are struggling to deal with bereavement of close family members, health issues, redundancies and retirement planning. By establishing a welfare vehicle and benevolent fund, SJAK members can cushion themselves against the adverse effects of the prevailing harsh environment,” Mutuota added.

Ondego, on his part, said: “Journalists covering major events like the upcoming Kip Keino Classic have an obligation to understand the dynamics of sports, the jargon and the regulations governing the game.”

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