London, 21st November 2011: Winners of this year’s Guardian International Development Journalism competition, run in partnership with Marie Stopes International, have now been announced. Culminating at an awards ceremony in London’s Royal Academy of Arts, winners Angela Robson (professional category) and Kiran Flynn (amateur category) were personally congratulated by television journalist Natasha Kaplinski.
Marie Stopes International’s Communications Manager, Media and Public Affairs, Michael Tirrell explains: "This is the fourth year Marie Stopes International has supported the competition, and we do it because it's key to improving awareness, commitment and support for international development. Journalists are able to give a voice to people in developing countries that may otherwise not have a chance to be heard and we are proud to motivate new and existing journalists to bring international development stories to life.”
Fighting off tough competition from over 400 entries, the 16 shortlisted writers visited developing countries in Africa or Asia on assignment for the Guardian. Manini Sheker, who entered as an amateur, travelled to the Philippines with Marie Stopes International to research the role of social franchises in reproductive health. And freelancer Alice Klein travelled to Zambia with us to look at unsafe abortions for the professional category.
The shortlisted pieces are to be published in two Guardian newspaper supplements (published on the 21st and 23rd November). The entire longlist of 40 entrants will have their articles published on The Guardian online.
Renwick Rose was honoured with the International Development Achievement Award for his passion, dedication and contribution to the Windward Islands community in the Caribbean. Affectionately known as the ‘Banana Man’, Renwick Rose formed the Windward Islands National Farmers’ Network Association (WINFA). While the banana trade was spiraling this cooperative of small scale farmers secured Fair Trade Certification and kept their place on supermarket shelves. Earning a premium of a dollar per box of bananas, the WINFA farmers invested back into the community, sustaining and developing the social, educational and trade infrastructure of the islands.
Read Alice Klein's report on how abortion is putting women's lives at risk in Zambia
Read all the professional finalist' stories on The Guardian website