Rachel Jones joined Global Press Journal in 2019. Previously, she was an International Development Media Consultant and a two-time Top 10 Media Writer on LinkedIn. In May of 2016, she concluded nine years of living in East Africa coaching and mentoring journalists who cover urgent health issues such as HIV/AIDS, child and reproductive health, malaria and health care access, as well as scientific research and policy related to national development. Jones also specializes in media outreach and training around food security, agriculture, immunization and child health for NGOs, research institutions and policymakers, including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF Kenya, the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), and the Kenyan Ministry of Health.
Jones was posted to Kenya in July 2008 through the Knight Health Fellowship Program of the International Center for Journalists. She was based with Nation Media Group, the largest media company in East and Central Africa. In August 2010, Jones was awarded an International Public Engagement Grant from the UK’s Wellcome Trust, which she used to create the one-year Kenyan Alliance of Health and Science Reporters project. As Director, Jones organized week-long training workshops and regional briefings for Kenyan reporters.
Jones, who has reported for National Public Radio, Knight Ridder News Service, the Detroit Free Press and the St. Petersburg Times, also served as Project Director for the Internews Network’s Gulu, Uganda Radio Training Center from June 2007 to February 2008. Jones helped train and mentor five-dozen Ugandan reporters and editors, covering issues including health, education and child welfare following more than two decades of civil war in Northern Uganda. In 2009 and 2010, Jones organized two journalism trainings at the U.S. Embassy in Kigali, Rwanda. From Dec. 2013 to May 2014, Jones advised UNICEF Kenya and the Polio Advocacy Working Group partners in developing a communications strategy to stimulate more insightful coverage of polio-related issues, as well as a broader range of child health and development areas. From October 2014 to September 2015, Jones served as Editor/Stringer Coordinator for Voice of America’s “South Sudan in Focus” nightly radio broadcast.
Jones also helped coordinate other projects including the Aug. 2013 strategic media planning for the Global Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH) initiative, media outreach for the Nov. 2013 “Kenya’s Access to Family Planning” event with the Gates Foundation, and the Sept. 2015 launch of the Alliance for Accelerating Excellence in Science in Africa (AESA).
Currently based in Washington, D.C., Jones has produced freelance feature content for Charlotte Magazine and worked as a media consultant for the U.K.-based Uniting to Combat Neglected Tropical Diseases coalition. In 2019, Jones produced features about maternal mortality and the Ebola response in the Democratic Republic of Congo for National Geographic Magazine, and is currently working with The Aspen Institute as a media advisor for their Healthy Communities Fellowship program.