UNICEF awards journalists for outstanding reporting on children’s rights in Bangladesh

05 December 2022
১৭তম ইউনিসেফ মীনা মিডিয়া অ্যাওয়ার্ডে শিশু অধিকার নিয়ে সাংবাদিকতায় পুরস্কার পাওয়ার পর উদযাপন করছেন বিজয়ীরা
UNICEF/UN0747739/Satu

DHAKA, 6 December 2022 – UNICEF has awarded eleven Bangladeshi journalists for their outstanding reporting on children’s rights at the 17th UNICEF Meena Media Awards. Launched by UNICEF in 2005, the Meena Media Awards recognize excellence in journalistic reporting that promotes the cause of children.

The winning entries were selected by an independent panel of judges from nearly 300 submissions from print, photo and video journalists working in both national and local media outlets. Stories by winners and nominees are about children forced into marriage and hard labour; of girls struggling to manage their menstrual hygiene without access to clean water; of boys whose only home is the streets; of children whose lives have been disrupted by climate shocks, persecution and the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The powerful reporting that we honour today demonstrates the vital role that journalists play in bringing children’s rights to light, and in holding people in power to account. These stories of bitter deprivation, but also everyday triumph against adversity, are an inspiration to us all,” said Mr. Sheldon Yett, UNICEF Representative to Bangladesh.

Talented child journalists under the age of 18 were also awarded. Their moving reports highlight the importance of giving children the tools and platforms that enable them to voice their own opinions, ideas and thoughts on issues of concern to them.

“We saw some powerful stories this year, and in coming days, weeks and months we need to maintain high standards of compassionate, empathetic reporting to the highest moral standards. Ethics and sensitivity are at the heart of good reporting and the more compelling the story, the more care needs to be given to how it is handled,” said Ruma Paul, Chief Correspondent of Reuters Bangladesh and one of the 2022 award judges.

The UNICEF Meena Media Awards are named after Meena, the popular cartoon character held dear by children and adults in Bangladesh and elsewhere in the world. The Meena character has been speaking up for the rights of children, and reminding adults of their responsibilities, in Bangladesh and beyond since 1993. The 2022 UNICEF Meena Media Awards is the 17th in a tradition that started in 2005.

The award ceremony was hosted by UNICEF on Tuesday 6 December 2022 in the Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel Grand Ballroom. Special guests included Matiur Rahman, Editor, Prothom Alo; Selina Hossain, Novelist and President of the Bangla Academy; Shameem Akhtar, Film maker and Lecturer at the Pathshala Institute; and Mahfuz Anam, Editor, The Daily Star, who sent a video message for the nominees.

Winners of the UNICEF Meena Media Awards 2022

  • Emran Hasan Sohel, Kaler Kantho for “Manta children have only the water” (print journalism)
  • Himu Chandra Shil, bdnews24.com for “A day in the life of Rohingya child Ayat Ullah” (print journalism)
  • Jesmin Akter Papri, News Bangla 24.com for “Rising salinity: Adolescent girls take birth control pills to stop their periods” (printjournalism)
  • Md. Sazid Hossain, Prothom Alo for “Child education” (photojournalism)
  • Nawaz Farhin Antara, Dhaka Tribune for ‘‘Pad Apa’: A beacon of hope for rural menstrual hygiene” (print journalism)
  • Shahnaz Sharmeen, Nagorik TV for “Child marriage has officially decreased … but what is the reality?” (videojournalism)
  • Tanvirul Islam, Dhaka Post for “Are we harming children by using terms like ‘auto pass’ and ‘COVID batch’” (print journalism)
  • Zahidul Karim, Daily Prothom Alo for “Price of rice” (photojournalism)

Winners of the UNICEF Children’s Meena Media Awards 2022 (under-18)

  • Mohammad Mosharof Hossain, Jago News 24.com for “Physical and mental health of Bede children deprived of education are at risk” (print journalism)
  • Khalidul Islam Tanvir, ATN Bangla for “When education becomes deadly” (videojournalism)
  • Dhee Aroni Pal, hello.bdnews24.com for “The road is their address” (photojournalism)

UNICEF Meena Media Awards 2022 judges

Abir Abdullah, Photographer, and Instructor at Alliance Francaise de Dhaka

Gitiara Nasreen, Professor, University of Dhaka

Jannatul Mawa, Photographer and Activist

Kajalie Shehreen Islam, Associate Professor, University of Dhaka

Nasir Ali Mamun, Portrait Photographer

Rafiqur Rahman, Multimedia journalist, Reuters, Bangladesh

Ruma Paul, Chief Correspondent, Reuters, Bangladesh

Shafiqul Alam, Bureau Chief, AFP

Serajul Islam Qadir, Former Bureau Chief, Reuters, Bangladesh

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Note to editors:

Full list of nominees of the UNICEF Meena Media Awards 2022

  • Adnan Rahman, Dhaka Post for Adverse impacts of climate change: Even the unborn not spared” (print journalism)
  • Afrida Jahin, hello.bdnews24.com for Awareness about menstrual health has increased in schools” (print journalism, under-18)
  • Afrin Akhter, ATN Bangla for “A life behind barbed wires” (videojournalism, under-18)
  • Alif Mohammed Iftiaj Nur Nishan, Ajker Patrika for “I want to return to our Arakan (print journalism)
  • Ariful Islam Rigan, Bangla Tribune for “Manipulations by marriage registrars to register child marriages (print journalism)
  • Asif Mahmud Ove, bdnews24.com for Risky ride in school van” (photojournalism)
  • Banani Mallick, The Daily Observer for “Climate change drives marginal community children towards malnutrition” (print journalism)
  • Dhee Aroni Pal, hello.bdnews24.com for “The road is their address (photojournalism, under-18)
  • Emran Hasan Sohel, Kaler Kantho for Manta children have only the water” (print journalism)
  • Fariha Afsana Kanta, Maasranga Television for “Importance of kids’ helmets on bikes” (videojournalism)
  • Gargee Tanushree Paul, hello.bdnews24.com for “No more war in a child’s world (print journalism, under-18)
  • Himu Chandra Shil, bdnews24.com for A day in the life of Rohingya child Ayat Ullah” (print journalism)
  • Hossain Mohammad Sagar, banglanews24.com for “Adult online content a trap for women and children (print journalism)
  • Ismail Hossain Rasel, Jago News 24 for “Unmoderated access to the digital world puts children at risk (print journalism)
  • Jesmin Papri, News Bangla 24 for Rising salinity: Adolescent girls take birth control pills to stop their periods” (print journalism)
  • Kazi Nafia Rahman, bdnews24.com for Pandemic puts an end to education” (print journalism)
  • Khalidul Islam Tanvir, ATN Bangla for When education becomes deadly” (videojournalism, under-18)
  • Md Jasim Uddin, Dhaka Post “Childhood turned ‘blue’ from illegal child labour (print journalism)
  • Md Jasim Uddin, Dhaka Post for “Rohingya children traumatized from fire outbreaks (print journalism)
  • Md Mobarak Hossain, ATN Bangla for Deprivation” (videojournalism, under-18)
  • Md. Abdus Samad, Dhaka Post for “Father drives a van, mother sells tea - daughter going to Portugal (print journalism)
  • Md. Monirul Islam, Mohona Television for “Birth registration requirements make education uncertain for one million children living on the streets (videojournalism)
  • Md. Sazid Hossain, Prothom Alo for “Child education” (photojournalism)
  • Md Tajul Islam Sami, hello.bdnews24.com for “No more child labour (print journalism, under-18)
  • Md. Tamim Ahmed Brinto, ATN Bangla for “In the midst of happy people (videojournalism, under-18)
  • Mohammad Mosharof Hossain, Jago News 24 for Physical and mental health of Bede children deprived of education are at risk” (print journalism, under-18)
  • Momammed Rubel, The Business Post for “Schooling under the sky” (photojournalism)
  • Mosabber Hossain, Prothom Alo for “The impact of climate change on children’s lives (print journalism)
  • Mousumi Islam, News Bangla 24 for “More women in the workforce, but not in top positions” (print journalism)
  • Muhammad Tarik Abedin (Emon), Dhaka Mail for “A life of struggle for Rohingya children starts at birth” (print journalism)
  • Musfiqur Rahman, hello.bdnews24.com for “Hazardous child labour in garbage dumps” (print journalism, under-18)
  • Nawaz Farhin Antara, Dhaka Tribune for “‘Pad Apa’: A beacon of hope for rural menstrual hygiene” (print journalism)
  • Naznin Akhter, Prothom Alo for “50 children from one school in Satkhira alone married off (print journalism)
  • Nilima Jahan, The Daily Star “Child Rape Survivors with Disabilities: The never-ending road to justice” (print journalism)
  • Rabiul Alam, Ajker Patrika for “87 per cent of people against women working (print journalism)
  • Reaz Ahmed Sumon, Daily Sun for “She should have been going to school …” (photojournalism)
  • Rubieat Haque Rudro, hello.bdnews24.com for “A protector of animals” (photojournalism, under-18)
  • Ruhani Binte Rahman (team submission), Daily Janakantha for “Children discriminated for where they live (videojournalism, under-18)
  • S. M. Manjurul Islam Sajid, hello.bdnews24.com for “What is the impact of climate change on children?” print journalism, under-18)
  • Saddam Hossain, BVNews24 for “Impact of COVID-19: Rising online gambling leads children and youth astray (print journalism)
  • Saikat Bhowmik, Sarabangla for “Impact of COVID-19 on children (print journalism)
  • Shahnaz Sharmeen, Nagorik TV for “Child marriage has officially decreased … but what is the reality? (videojournalism)
  • Shaikh Shahrukh Farhan, The Daily Observer for “Bangladeshi school children’s early drop-out tied to climate change” (print journalism)
  • Sharif Rubel, Daily Amar Sangbad for “The fates of children living on the streets sealed in birth certificates (print journalism)
  • Shawket Sagor, Ananda TV for “Street children” (videojournalism)
  • Shoriful Islam, Shishu Barta for “No to discrimination, include autistic children in development (print journalism, under-18)
  • Sony Ramany, New Age for “Unplanned construction blamed for flood situation” (photojournalism)
  • Sultana Yesmin, Maasranga Television for “Torture of domestic child maids” (videojournalism)
  • Tanvirul Islam, Dhaka Post for Are we harming children by using terms like ‘auto pass’ and ‘COVID batch’ (print journalism)
  • Zahidul Karim, Prothom Alo for “Price of rice” (photojournalism)
  • Zahidur Rahman, Samakal for “Children in coastal areas are being deprived of their childhood due to climate change (print journalism)

Media contacts

Moyukh Mahtab
UNICEF Bangladesh
Tel: +8801685023541
Faria Selim
UNICEF Bangladesh
Tel: +8801817586096

About UNICEF

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across more than 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone. 

For more information about UNICEF and its work for children visit www.unicef.org 

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