, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 15 – Kenyan Patrick Mayoyo is among nine journalists from Africa who dominated the globe award the Lorenzo Natali Media Prize for outstanding reporting on development.
The nine were picked from among 1,400 participants from across the world. Their journalistic reports covered topics ranging from the e-waste economy in Ghana, to innovative farming methods in slums in Kenya, drug crime in Mexico, and child prostitution in Myanmar.
The winning journalists received prizes of €5,000 and trophies during the Lorenzo Natali Media Prize Award Ceremony held in the Bibliothèque Solvay in Brussels, Belgium on Thursday.
Mayoyo’s story which was published by the UK’s Guardian highlights a government initiative in Kenya that is helping a growing community of residents to tackle food insecurity in Kibera, one of Africa’s largest slums.
In the heart of the bustling, informal settlement they are championing an unusual form of urban farming: sack gardens. The approach is seen as a cheap and healthy solution to food insecurity and unemployment in a country where an estimated 1.5 million people don’t have enough to eat.
Sack farming has the potential not only to make food more available and affordable, but also more nutritious. The project also discourages people from planting crops near dump sites and sewers, which contain heavy metals such as lead and mercury, resulting in a health risk to those who consume contaminated vegetables grown near them.
Mayoyo is the founder and Editorial Director of africaeconews.com, a website dedicated to highlighting environmental and ecological issues in Kenya, Africa, and globally. He is an award winning investigative journalist based in Nairobi who writes extensively on the environment.
Mayoyo studied Journalism at the London School of Journalism and is a member of the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR) and the Global Investigative Journalists Network (GIJN).
This year’s Grand Prize was awarded to Arison Tamfu from Cameroon for his story ‘Africa’s billions might be buried forever’, published in the Cameroon Daily Journal. The story shows how the use of renewable energies is improving lives in rural communities in Africa,” a statement issued after the ceremony on Thursday indicated.
Now in its 21st edition, the Lorenzo Natali Media Prize links the EU’s conviction of freedom, democracy, and human rights with its dedication to development and poverty eradication by honouring journalists for their reports on crucial development issues in line with this year’s theme/slogan ‘Today’s stories can change our tomorrow’.
The 2015 edition of the award was organised in the context of the European Year for Development, and for the first time, the competition was open to both professional and amateur journalists, as well as bloggers.