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Leah Lowonbu : Australia Awards Vanuatu Scholar Strengthening Media Links Within the Pacific

Posted in News

Leah Lowonbu and Johnson Raela.

Leah Lowonbu is an Australia Awards Vanuatu awardee studying a Bachelor of Journalism at Griffith University who recently attended the Pacific Media Partnership Conference (PMPC) in Brisbane, Australia. This event comes at a significant time by recognising the importance of journalism and freedom of expression in the context of the current global environmental crisis.

Leah hails from Efate Island, where she resides with her 10-year-old daughter, and she began her career in media as an intern with Vanuatu Broadcasting and Television Corporation (VBTC) in 2017. Her love for journalism stems from its essence of serving the people, providing a platform to address real issues affecting their lives. Leah’s goal upon graduating and returning to Vanuatu, is to continue her work at VBTC.

This year’s theme at the PMPC was centred around ‘Pacific Media 2034: Charting A Course For The Next Decade’ and provided an opportunity to harness the collective wisdom and experience of the region’s most experienced broadcasters and the resources of the world’s biggest broadcasting union to map a path forward.

Leah was joined by members of the VBTC team and an array of key speakers, working together to strengthen people-to-people links across the Pacific. Leah explains ‘I was fortunate enough to be invited and participate as an MC alongside Johnson Raela, the TV host of ABC Pacific news. The conference discussed the main issues being faced by media organisations in the Pacific as well as celebrating the successes of broadcasters and what we can learn from each other.

Amidst her studies in Australia, Leah is also contributing to the ABC Wantok Program. In her role, she writes Bislama news articles, amplifying Ni-Vanuatu voices through the media company whilst also exemplifying the inspirational story of a Ni-Vanuatu woman through her own journey and the power of media.