Mindanawons win four of five major awards in Red Cross humanitarian reporting contest

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/27 August) — Mindanawon journalists won four of five major awards in the 2nd Red Cross Humanitarian Reporting Awards, for the online, print, radio and photography categories.

MindaNews’ Business Editor Bong Sarmiento won the top prize in the online category for  his special report,  “The Tampakan project: Battle over Southeast Asia’s largest copper-gold reserve” while SunStar editor in chief Stella Estremera won the top prize for the print category for “Strides into the future.”

Malu Cadelina-Manar of DXND in Kidapawan City, who also contributes to MindaNews, topped the finalists in the radio category for “Tudok Firiz: Meketefu” while Jeffrey Maitem of Philippine Daily Inquirer won first in the Photography category for  “Child in red blanket.”

Manar’s other entry, “ “Mga bakwit: TNT sa Maguindanao,” also won second place.

The winner in the fifth category, Video, went to GMA News and Public Affairs’ Reel Time for “Batang Halau,” a one-hour documentary on the plight of undocumented Filipinos living in Sabah.

The winners of the award organized by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Philippine Red Cross (PRC)   were announced in an awarding ceremony Tuesday at The Bayleaf in Intramuros.

“Their stories and images illustrated the heavy toll of conflicts on civilians—with some looking through the eyes of children who are the more vulnerable in these situations. All the finalists showed that reporting on conflict need not be sensationalized or focused only on the conflict or on the peace negotiations,” said Pascal Mauchle, ICRC head of delegation to the Philippines.

Mauchle handed the trophies and prizes to the winners along with Gwendolyn Pang, PRC secretary general, and representatives from partner organizations International News Safety Institute (INSI), The Peace and Conflict Journalism Network (Pecojon), Photojournalists’ Center of the Philippines (PCP), and Rotary Club of Manila (RCM).

Eleven Mindanawons were among 18 finalists in the Humanitarian Reporting contest, five of them from MindaNews.

Of the 11 finalists, four won major awards – Sarmiento, Estremera, Manar and Maitem. Four others won second and third prizes:  Ruby Thursday More and Erwin Mascarinas of MindaNews, Julie Alipala of the Philippine Daily
Inquirer and Ruel Dagsangan of  DXDN Radyo Ukay.

The other winners:

For photography: “Bakwit” by Ruby Thursday More of Mindanews (second place) and “Clash on Good Friday” by Erwin Mascariñas of Mindanews (third place).

For print: “Women take lead in bringing peace” by Julie Alipala of Inquirer (second place) and “‘Bangsamoro’ stirs feelings of Christians, Muslims” by Celerina del Mundo of Daily Manila Shimbun (third place).

For radio: “Mga bakwit: TNT sa Maguindanao” also by Manar (second place) and “Mga residente sa Maco: na-trauma sa giyera” by Ruel Dagsangan of DxDN Radyo Ukay (third place).

For video: “Bakwit,” by Karen Davila and Karen Namora of ABS-CBN (second place); “Killings unabated under Aquino” by Ronalyn Olea of Bulatlat.com (third place).

A press release from the ICRC said a total of 19 judges from the partner organizations judged the entries based on: evidence of research (30 percent); sourcing (20 percent); coherence/ organization (20 percent); style and presentation (15 percent); and conflict-sensitive reporting (15 percent).

Before the awarding rites, the finalists attended a forum on conflict reporting. Former Press Secretary, now Philippine Press Institute chair and president,  Jesus Dureza,  spoke about the “Pains and gains of conflict reporting,” while Rommel Banlaoi, chair and executive director of the Philippine Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research, discussed “Media reporting of the maritime territorial disputes: national and regional security implications.”  (MindaNews)