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New award celebrates excellence in population, health, environment reporting in Africa

The USAID-funded Building Capacity for Integrated Family Planning and Reproductive Health and Population, Environment and Development Action (BUILD Project) on Wednesday, April 17, 2024, launched a journalism award to amplify media engagement with population, health, environment and sustainable development programmes in Africa.

BUILD Project
Participants at a co-creation session to launch the award

Co-created by journalists from the East Africa region, the PHED African Media (PAM) award aims to recognise and celebrate journalists and media houses that demonstrate excellence in covering the complex and interconnected issues of population, health, environment, and sustainable development (PHED) in Africa. By highlighting exemplary reporting on these crucial topics, the award seeks to encourage and inspire further high-quality, nuanced coverage of PHED matters across the continent.

The award was launched with a co-creation session, where media stakeholders detailed criteria, the process for selection, categories, the role and responsibility of the panel, and the relevant non-monetary prizes attached to the award.

Journalists from Eastern Africa will pilot the first phase of the award and have until June 30, 2024, to submit entries of stories, photographs, and multimedia content that have been done 12 months before the official call.

The co-creators noted that stories must capture the integration of population, family planning, sexual rights and reproductive health rights (SRHR), climate change, and sustainable development, which should be presented in innovative ways such as the use of multimedia formats.

The BUILD Project also hosted training for the journalists and other stakeholders from the region to enhance their capacity to comprehend the nexus and integration of health, including voluntary family planning and reproductive health and environment and climate change.

“Through this award, we aim to recognise and celebrate the vital role journalists play in shaping narratives around the complex, interconnected challenges and solutions within the population, health, environment, and sustainable development sectors.

“By showcasing exceptional reporting on these critical issues, we hope to inspire a greater depth and breadth of coverage, amplifying the visibility of these matters and their impact on the lived realities and experiences of people across the region,” said Clive Mutunga, the Director of the BUILD Project.

In addition to recognising  journalists committed to covering PHED issues, this PHED African Media (PAM) award will boost policy dialogues across East Africa on the benefits of cross-sectoral solutions for regional policy and program action.

The BUILD project is led by the African Institute for Development Policy (AFIDEP) (prime) in partnership with Leadership for Environment and Development Southern and Eastern Africa (LEAD SEA), PATH Foundation Philippines Inc. (PFPI), FHI 360, and Pan-African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA).

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