For Nancy Agutu of the Star Newspaper owned by Radio Africa Group, a runner up in the print category whose story depicts an education project in rural Kenya that provides a library for girls and access to reproductive health and sex education, the award is a win for girls whose lives have been impacted by her story. “For me, it means that the people I wrote about can see the impact the story had on their lives. She continues that “I am happy and excited with this award. My story on ‘Girls drawing river of life maps’ is a blueprint of what happens in communities that are untold,” she said. “The fact that these girls can picture and draw the future they want and how they want it is just amazing. My win is their win.”
The other runners up for the night were Nuru Mwalimu from Radio Rahma whose radio feature “Women’s leadership gets a boost in Coast region, Kenya” highlights the stereotypes that women aspiring for political office experience in the Coast region. It seeks to challenge and counter the notion that women are their own enemies and that they always work to bring down their own. Nuru interviews different stakeholders that include male and female voices to reinforce this message. Albert Mwanyasi from Sifa FM Marsabit was recognized as second runner up radio category for his report on how early marriages in Marsabit hinders girls access to education.
Jamila Mohamed, Managing Editor of Citizen Television Kenya and representative of the jury congratulated all the nominees and winners of the night. She assures all that the award evaluation process was thorough and fair. She said all the winners deserve their win while encouraging unsuccessful entrants to continue to do good journalism. Jamila lauded JHR’s media capacity-building program which provides training and long-term mentorship to journalists.
“My overall assessment of the awards was the tremendous growth I saw in the entries. Most of the stories were well told, well researched, and conveyed the intended message. As jury we could clearly see the fruits of the training that the journalists underwent, and it was commendable.”
She continued that “there is room for improvement, but I feel we are closer to achieving the goals. I wished for more entries from Television journalists, I do hope that in the next awards we will be able to incorporate more TV stories. An amazing learning experience it was to the jury too as we were able to look at some of the issues from the point of view of journalists who work closely with the community,” she said.