Viacom's BET and MTV Brands Document First Lady Michelle Obama's Youth Engagement Trip to South Africa and Botswana Across Network Platforms

Jun 15, 2011
By ViacomCBS Staff

BET's 106 & Park Will Air Special Message From The First Lady On Thursday, June 16 at 6:00 PM ET

BET Networks, BET International and Will Premiere A 30-minute BET News Special, IMPACT AFRICA: ON A MISSION WITH THE FIRST LADY

MTV News and mtvU To Feature Updates Throughout the Historic Trip

Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA and VIA.B) today announced that its cable brands MTV and BET Networks will engage their news, social media, international, and targeted show franchises to chronicle First Lady Michelle Obama's trip to South Africa and Botswana to engage and empower young people in the U.S. and abroad.

First Lady Michelle Obama and her family will travel to Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa and Gaborone, Botswana during an official visit to Africa from June 21 - 26 focused on youth leadership, education, health and wellness. This is a continuation of Mrs. Obama's work to engage young people at home and abroad, from mentoring students in the United States and encouraging them to gain international experience, to encouraging young people to excel academically, serve, and lead during her visits to Brazil, Chile, El Salvador, India, Mexico and the United Kingdom.

"We're so excited to engage with BET and MTV's audiences throughout this historic trip," said Kristina Schake, Communications Director to the First Lady. "Mrs. Obama has called on young people at home, in Africa, and around the world to follow the trip and connect with each other. We know that young people are not only the leaders of tomorrow, but also are the leaders of today, and we want their voices to be heard."

Following is an outline of the content for BET Networks and MTV:

  • BET's daily music countdown show 106 & PARK will air a special message from Mrs. Obama addressing the audience during a taping of 106 & PARK, airing on Thursday, June 16.
  • BET, BET International and will air a News special IMPACT AFRICA: ON A MISSION WITH THE FIRST LADY. Hosted by journalist Lola Ogunnaike, the 30-minute program will capture exclusive footage of the First Lady along with her mother and daughters in South Africa at featured events including Mrs. Obama delivering the keynote address to a U.S.-sponsored Young African Women Leaders Forum in South Africa and visiting the Johannesburg Apartheid Museum and Robben Island Prison Museum in Cape Town where Nelson Mandela and many anti-apartheid leaders were imprisoned. The special will also include a "Reporter's Journal," during which Ogunnaike will write short blog entries along the route capturing special moments of the trip and her personal experience.
  • MTV News will cover the First Lady's June 16 announcement on MTV, mtvU,, and associated social media platforms (Twitter & Facebook).
  • MTV News will provide updates throughout the First Lady's trip on MTV, mtvU,,, and social media platforms.
  • MTV Base Africa will run coverage of the First Lady's visit across their digital and social media platforms, including daily online reports filed by MTV Base Africa reporter covering the trip. Highlights from BET reporter Lola Ogunnaike's "Reporter Journals" will be featured on,, and social media platforms.

Twitter users will be able to track updates about First Lady Michelle Obama's experiences and interact with others who are following the trip with the hashtag #YoungAfrica.

For more information on IMPACT AFRICA: ON A MISSION WITH THE FIRST LADY, please visit

*All times ET/PT

About BET Networks

BET Networks, a subsidiary of Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), is the nation's leading provider of quality entertainment, music, news and public affairs television programming for the African-American audience. The primary BET channel reaches more than 90 million households and can be seen in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom and sub-Saharan Africa. BET is the dominant African-American consumer brand with a diverse group of business extensions:, a leading Internet destination for Black entertainment, music, culture, and news; CENTRIC, a 24-hour entertainment network targeting the 25- to 54-year-old African-American audience; BET Digital Networks - BET Gospel and BET Hip Hop, attractive alternatives for cutting-edge entertainment tastes; BET Home Entertainment, a collection of BET-branded offerings for the home environment including DVDs and video-on-demand; BET Event Productions, a full-scale event management and production company with festivals and live events spanning the globe; BET Mobile, which provides ringtones, games and video content for wireless devices; and BET International, which operates BET in the United Kingdom and oversees the extension of BET network programming for global distribution.

About MTV

MTV is the world's premier youth entertainment brand. With a global reach of more than a half-billion households, MTV is the cultural home of the millennial generation, music fans and artists, and a pioneer in creating innovative programming for young people. MTV reflects and creates pop culture with its Emmy®, Grammy® and Peabody® award-winning content built around compelling storytelling, music discovery and activism across TV, online and mobile. MTV's sibling networks MTV2 and mtvU each deliver unparalleled customized content for young males, music fans and college students, and its online hub is the leading destination for music, news and pop culture. MTV is part of MTV Networks, a unit of Viacom (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), one of the world's leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms. For more information, go to

About Viacom

Viacom is home to the world's premier entertainment brands. Through its BET Networks, MTV Networks and Paramount Pictures divisions, Viacom connects with audiences through compelling content across television, motion picture, online and mobile platforms in more than 160 countries and territories. With approximately 170 media networks reaching more than 600 million global subscribers, Viacom's leading brands include MTV, VH1, CMT, Logo, BET, CENTRIC, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., TeenNick, Nicktoons, Nick at Nite, COMEDY CENTRAL, TV Land, Spike TV and Tr3s. Paramount Pictures, America's oldest film studio and creator of many of the most beloved motion pictures, continues today as a major global producer and distributor of filmed entertainment. Viacom operates a large portfolio of branded digital media experiences, including many of the world's most popular properties for entertainment, community and casual online gaming.

For more information about Viacom and its businesses, visit