New Vision journalist Caroline Ariba has been named one of three finalists for the Thomson Foundation Young Journalist Award.
Ms Ariba is the beneficiary of a number of awards, including the ACME-managed Uganda National Journalism Awards in which she emerged winner in the arts and culture reporting category in both 2014 and 2015.
In an email to ACME, Ms Ariba says being nominated for the Young Journalist Award means her work is worthy of recognition even outside of Uganda’s borders. She notes that such acclaim is a major boost for journalists that “are the foot soldiers who bridge the distance between the voiceless and those calling the shots, but rarely get appreciated.”
Other finalists for the Young Journalist Award are Kuma Sambhav, a principal correspondent (investigations) with the Hindustan Times, India and Fisayo Soyombo, Editor of The Cable, Nigeria. The trio was selected out of a pool of 117 applicants from 30 countries around the world.
ACME Executive Director Dr Peter Mwesige says ACME is proud of Ms Ariba, who the organisation has come to know through her accomplishments at the Uganda National Journalism Awards,
“By making it to the final three of the Thomson Foundation Young Journalist Award, Ms Ariba demonstrates her growing journalistic brilliance and testifies to the fact that there exists a crop of exceptional journalists in Uganda able to take the industry into new, exciting territory.”
Ms Ariba submitted three stories for competition in the Young Journalist Award. Two of them were shortlisted for the Uganda National Journalism Awards, with one winning the arts and culture reporting category. She says she was motivated to enter the competition because of the national recognition the stories received and the high commendation from her editors.
“See, two of the stories not only had readers and senior editors commending me, but were thought good enough to make it to the ACME awards. And also, I learned that these stories had created a buzz so loud on the local radio stations that listeners called their local leaders to action,” she explains.
Mr Nigel Baker, the Thomson Foundation chief executive said the increase in the number of entries and the range of participating countries is “a very encouraging development”.
“The quality has also increased in line with the quantity, with the standard of entries across the board demonstrating conscientious research, greater initiative and impact, and higher standards of writing and broadcasting,” he enthused in an announcement on the organisation’s website.
This is the third year that the Thomson Foundation award is being presented as part of the annual UK Foreign Press Association Awards. The winner will be announced during the awards evening event on Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at Sheraton Park Hotel, London.
The Award criteria
- The award invited entries from journalists aged below 30 from countries with Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita of less than $20,000
- The journalists were asked to submit three examples of their work and, following expressions of interest from countries in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Central & Eastern Europe, the Middle East, South America and Oceania.
- The journalists were to submit a written statement of no more than 600 words giving a summary of the content of each story and any impact it had on the public debate in the country of publication.
- Each entrant for the award had to submit a portfolio of three published pieces of work produced in the 12 months preceding the deadline for submissions. They could be in any format – print, audio, video, multimedia or a combination of all four.