Reporting Right Livelihood 2017 Grantees Announced

Press releases 03.07.2017


Reporting Right Livelihood 2017  Grantees Announced

Journalists from Brazil, Egypt, Germany, Guinea, India, Nigeria, Pakistan and Zimbabwe will receive grants totalling €25,000 to shine the light on ‘under-reported‘ stories linked to the work of ‘Alternative Nobel’ Laureates.

The grantees of the inaugural Reporting Right Livelihood journalism programme were selected from among 93 applicants from 48 countries. The grants, ranging from €200 to €5,000, cover essential travel, subsistence and communication costs to enable reporting on the selected stories over the next six months. The decision was made by a committee comprised of journalists and media experts from Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, and the UK.

This year’s grantees are:

  • Ms Aissatou Barry (Guinea), to produce a multimedia report on fighting impunity in Chad, Senegal and Burkina Faso, linked to the work of Laureate Jacqueline Moudeina (€ 4,800)
  • Mr Bikash Bhattacharya (India), to report on Indonesia’s logging sector corruption, an issue constantly raised by late Laureate Munir Said Thalib (€4,500)
  • Ms Fabiola Ortiz (Brazil), to provide a multimedia report on how Brazilian martial art Capoeira became a powerful tool to promote peace among men, women and children in the Democratic Republic of Congo, linked to the work of Dr Denis Mukwege (€5,000).
  • Ms Mervis Elebe (Nigeria) and Mr Ray Mwareya (Zimbabwe) will share a grant to report on the current situation with maternal health in Nigeria and Zimbabwe, linked to Dr Catherine Hamlin’s work on eliminating obstetric fistula in Ethiopia (€ 2,500 each, €5,000 in total).
  • Mr Philipp Lichterbeck (Germany) to report on the ’slow genocide’ of a little known Guarani-Kaiowa indigenous group in Brazil, linked to Laureate Survival International‘s work (€ 1,500).
  • Mr Roger Anis (Egypt), to produce a photo report on Egypt’s current housing crisis, linked to the legacy of Right Livelihood Award’s inaugural Laureate Hassan Fathy (€4,000).
  • In addition, the selection committee made a discretionary allocation of €200 to Ms Zofeen Ebrahim (Pakistan) who applied for a grant of US $57 to cover fuel costs in order to report on Pakistan’s home-based workers rights, linked to the work of Laureate Asma Jahangir.

Quotes from grantees and selection committee members:

“En tant que guinéenne, je suis personnellement marquée par l’engagement de Jacqueline Moudeïna, l’avocate tchadienne, contre l’impunité en Afrique. Les questions liées à l’impunité sont un sujet mal couvert par les médias africains. Par ailleurs les moyens de mener les investigations nécessaires manquent, sans parler des menaces qui pèsent sur tout journaliste qui aborde ces questions considérées comme des sujets sensibles,” Aissatou Barry (Guinea), 2017 Reporting Right Livelihood grantee

“The Right Livelihood Award is not only deep-rooted in human values, it has also successfully moved beyond the clichéd anthropocentrism by recognizing works dedicated towards protecting the environment. The Reporting Right Livelihood media grant scheme is a golden opportunity for a journalist to cover issues related to the visionary works of Right Livelihood Award Laureates who strive for a better future,” Bikash Kumar Bhattacharya (India), 2017 Reporting Right Livelihood grantee

“As an independent journalist dedicated to covering human rights and development, the journalism grant is a unique opportunity to be able to successfully accomplish a reporting project: how Brazilian martial art Capoeira can help empower women, boys and girls affected by the ongoing conflicts and sexual violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo where Dr. Mukwege works,” Fabíola Ortiz (Brazil), 2017 Reporting Right Livelihood grantee

“I have been interested in writing on women suffering from obstetric fistula; the grant scheme affords me the opportunity to shine the spotlight on Dr. Catherine Hamlin and the wonderful work she has done in Ethiopia with a view to inspiring well-meaning individuals to set up such initiatives in other African countries,” Mervis Ipheoma Elebe (Nigeria), 2017 Reporting Right Livelihood grantee

“The journalism grant is a wonderful opportunity to research an important and little known topic: the struggle for survival of the Guarani-Kaiowa indigenous group in southwestern Brazil. The Guarani-Kaiowa’s existence is threatened by the aggressive expansion of big landowners, especially those in the soybean industry. Some call it a ‘genocide in slow motion’,” Philipp Lichterbeck (Germany), 2017 Reporting Right Livelihood grantee

“Zimbabwe has Africa’s highest teenage fertility rates. Obstetric fistula is an under-reported story because today most of healthcare aid money in African countries like Zimbabwe is directed mainly at the fight against Ebola, HIV, malaria and tuberculosis. Obstetric fistula condition and its sufferers are hidden by unscientific myths so the media and society shuns them,” Ray Mwareya (Zimbabwe), 2017 Reporting Right Livelihood grantee

Every time I roam the city and look around me I find nothing but ugliness, red bricks, blocks of cement without any planning nothing green, nothing relative to our environment. The incident of the leaning building in Alexandria was an illustration of the disaster we are living in and the bigger disaster that awaits us regarding the housing crisis. Reading about Hassan Fathy made me eager to know more about his ideology and architecture, and knowing that he was the first laureate of the Right Livelihood Award made me feel proud as an Egyptian but also eager to learn more,” Roger Anis (Egypt), 2017 Reporting Right Livelihood grantee

“I often apply for writing fellowships but this was different. In my small way I want to tell people that there is an invisible but a substantial workforce that needs to be reckoned and recognised and even honoured,” Zofeen Ebrahim (Pakistan), 2017 Reporting Right Livelihood grantee

“I was impressed by the variety, the creativity and relevance of proposals which made our decision so challenging and difficult. The projects we chose show a strong commitment to report on under-covered issues addressed by the Right Livelihood Award Laureates through their personal engagement. This shows how important it is to support journalistic coverage of these issues in order to improve the lives of people who suffer because of injustice, poverty, sickness or political pressure,” Adelheid Feilcke, Deutsche Welle, selection committee member

“Partout dans le monde des femmes et des hommes courageux se battent contre les injustices. L’engagement des journalistes est indispensable, pour faire echo à ces combats. Ces bourses vont pouvoir faire avancer les causes défendues et honorer les lauréats du Prix Right Livelihood,” Romaine Jean, Radio Télévision Suisse (RTS), selection committee member


About the Right Livelihood Award

The Right Livelihood Award was established in 1980 to “honour and support courageous people and organisations offering visionary and exemplary solutions to the root causes of global problems”. It has become widely known as the ‘Alternative Nobel Prize’ and there are now 166 Laureates from 68 countries. In addition to presenting the annual award in Stockholm, the Right Livelihood Award Foundation supports its Laureates, particularly those who may be in danger due to the nature of their work.

For more information, please contact:

Xenya Cherny-Scanlon, Director of Communications, mobile: +41 76 690 8798,, #RightLivelihood #AlternativeNobel


More information about Reporting Right Livelihood journalism grant scheme:

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