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In scope: Arnold Ntambi, videography, mentorship, and the future of IYSR

Arnold Ntambi first participated in the programme in 2010. (Photo by Emmanuel Kwabena Budu-Annor)
by Emmanuel Kwabena Budu-Annor
Hong Kong, April 13, 2018 - Positive appraisal of the Asian Young Sports Reporter Programme – now an international programme – once again resonated among benefactors of the 2018 edition of the annual training camp. Delegates from all over Asia, Africa, Europe, as well as South America graced the event with zeal and their desire to learn with all they had to show for.

Per their inferences, these attributes were fully utilized. Although knowledge and skills gathering at camps of such sort are the most vital returns for respective participation, it is the memory and experiences that usually seat in the minds of these eager trainees. Yet, often at times, the ones responsible for ensuring that these memories live on – despite playing an active role in the discourse – are barely recognized.

One of those, the subject of this editorial, is Arnold Ntambi. Since benefiting from the inaugural AIPS Young Reporters Training Programme held in Shenzhen back in 2010, Arnold hardly shied away from helping in the grooming of the YSR’s annual participants. Almost always armed with a camera, the Ugandan native has consistently documented the happenings in silence and has also mentored trainees interested in photography whenever the need be.

Having started out as a young sports journalist with limited opportunities to put his abilities to good use, the industrious young man developed a keen interest in handling the camera. He caught the virus as a result of frequently being around videographers at his workplace.

“I was an intern at my current place of work, Channel 44, but I was just in the news department – specifically sports news so I was usually out in the field.

“I was so naïve about pictures and video editing because I only learnt camera work whenever I was around the professionals.

“Then I had the opportunity to be in the first AIPS Young Reporters Training Programme in Shenzhen in 2010 during the Summer Universiade.

“My boss gave my colleagues and myself the chance to go and cover the event and that was where I developed the passion to make more video documentaries. That’s how I started.”

Although it is mostly his beaming smile that is peculiarly striking at first sight, his composure behind his camera mounted on the tripod stand is remarkable as well. A lot of incidents happen simultaneously but that barely deters Arnold from getting most of all these fleeting moments intact with his camera. For him, the mantra of the IYSR espouses all the motivational elements to do what he does.

“The theme of the International Young Reporters Training Program, which is passion, vision, determination, and connection defines everything I am doing now.

“If you’re passionate about something, you’re naturally motivated. An event is happening and then it stops here but then again you need someone who is going to carry it on to show the world that in 2018 the IYSR took place and this is how it was.

“The feeling when I wake up every morning is to make something meaningful; make a good shot, good videos and finally good editing.”

As a video mentor for the fourth year running at the AYSR Training Camp the latter statement is categorically vital to the successes of beneficiaries of the yearly event. Improvement is key to continuity and the desire to influence as many aspirants as possible in the field of photography makes Arnold inclined to strive for greatness with each passing day.

Inasmuch as Arnold has attained professional status, he has a resource person of his own who consistently provides him with guidance. Mr. Raymond Chiu Chan Fai, a mastermind behind the Asian Young Sports Reporters Training Camp, has over the years been the Ugandan videographer’s counsellor and go-to guy. To Arnold, it is Raymond’s innovative acumen that fascinates him the most.

“Raymond Chiu, the chief mentor of this training camp as I like to call him, always comes up with new ideas.

“Take this training camp for instance. New activities were added to supplement some of the ones which were featured on last year’s program.

“Even with the old activities, he tweaked their structures a bit to add more spice to it.

“Last year we had rugby training, golf, and rock climbing and this year he added cricket and lacrosse.

“He keeps on adding new ideas and events to make the experience a memorable one and I believe it won’t be the same next year.

“His inventive feature is something I have been trying to learn and apply in my own field.”

The pair has been on expeditions for AIPS in Baku, Lausanne, Ashgabat etc. and their ever-growing bond has been expedited by their mutual respect. Per Mr. Chiu, it was Arnold’s passion and desire to learn that made him want to help him more.

“Upon meeting him in 2010, I noticed that he was diligent, he had the basic knowledge but he only lacked the experience.

“Every time I talk with him regarding his performance, he accepts feedback and is ready to learn. He is always on the lookout for the best opportunities to go outside Uganda to better himself.

“He always looks forward to working with me whenever I call upon him and I am also always willing to share my television and production experiences with him.”

About experiences, Mr. Chui has gone out of the mainstream order of things to model the Asian training camp in a way which holds practicality in high esteem. With his pioneering trait and the help of a small but efficient team, Mr. Chiu ensured that participant of this year’s edition of the camp had all the resources at their disposal to execute their tasks while synchronously having fun. To him, that is the only way to ensure the continuity of the camp which has now evolved from its continental status to inter-continental.

Nonetheless, for the traditions of AIPS to be passed onto the next generation of journalist untainted, Arnold Ntambi believes that the time is right for other continents to use the Asian initiative as a yardstick to organize programmes of such nature. Citing the lack of infrastructure in most African countries as a possible hindrance to the cause, he asserted that it is still worth the shot. For the young and upcoming journalist, Arnold advised that they stay humble and do what they love the most while awaiting the opportunities to showcase their talents to the world.

“My advice to the upcoming journalists all over the world is that they should be passionate and determined about whatever they do.

“Never settle for less and do not be stagnant. Envision yourself being one of the best in five, ten years or even less. And when opportunities like the IYSR Training Camp come along, never shy away from participating.

“Strive for greatness and make your dreams come true,” he added.
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