Sports broadcaster creates 150 jobs for locals at upcoming Commonwealth Games

Ahmed Al Bakri will be a vision mixer at the NEC

More than 150 people have been selected to work for sports broadcaster Sunset+Vine in this years Commonwealth Games.

The host broadcaster created a training initiative specifically for Birmingham’s Games in partnership with Birmingham City University, Create Central, WMCA and Solihull College.

200 work experience placements were offered as part of the Host Broadcast Training Initiative, which aims to address the lack of diversity in sports broadcasting.

Training commenced earlier this year with participants receiving industry-level skills in live TV, broadcasting and production.

Now 150 are ready to play their part in the screening of the Games taking place in Birmingham between July 28 and August 8, to 1.5bn people worldwide.

Roles include content creators, production co-ordinators, media managers, camera operators, edit assistants, loggers, live gallery PAs, assistant floor managers and technical roles.

David Tippett, managing director of Sunset+Vine, said: “The HBTI is the jewel in Sunset+Vine’s Commonwealth Games legacy for the Midlands. We’re thrilled to have completed training and offered real-world industry experience to over 200 trainees, with 150 of them now set to join us for paid roles on the Games.
“The lack of diversity in sports broadcasting is an ongoing issue and this scheme is one way we are looking to play our part in addressing that – and we’re thrilled that over 60% of our trainees are from underrepresented groups within our industry. 

“Now all that remains is for them to join us on one of the biggest sporting events to be held in the heart of Birmingham.”

He added that Sunset+Vine will continue to mentor trainees post Games, helping them to launch a career in the industry.

One of those given the opportunity to work with Sunset+Vine is Birmingham man Ahmed Al Bakri.
The 42-year-old, who lives in Aston with wife Sumaia and their four children, secured the spot earlier this year as he completed his final year media production studies at Birmingham City University.

Al Bakri, who was born in Cardiff but was brought up in Yemen before returning to the UK in 2008, has already enjoyed two stints as a television presenter for two Arabic TV channels in London, but is hoping to pursue a career behind the camera.

Al Bakri said: “Having this opportunity and being able to put it on my CV is priceless and I hope it will help me to be offered a job in TV, whether with Sunset+Vine or with another broadcaster. But I’ve no doubt it’ll be an unforgettable experience.”