Diageo announces winners of the Women's Empowerment Journalism Awards 2015

Diageo, the world’s leading premium drinks company, has announced the winners of the Women’s Empowerment (WE) Journalism Awards 2015, recognising exemplary work in women’s empowerment reporting at an Awards Gala Dinner held in Hong Kong.

The award recipients of the WE Journalism Awards 2015 are:
• Print Story of the Year: Ruhi Kandhari, Tehelka (India)

Entry: How Women Pay The Price For Population Control
• Broadcast Story of the Year: Pearl Maria Forss, Channel NewsAsia (Singapore)

Entry: Women Fight Back
• Online Story of the Year: Bec Zajac, Freelance (Australia)

Entry: Power And Gender: How Schools Are Taking A Lead In The Campaign To End Violence Against Women
• Photo Story of the Year: Altaf Qadri, Associated Press (India)

Entry: She Sought Good Life In Delhi, But Found Trash
• Journalist of the Year: Bec Zajac, Freelance (Australia)
• Media Title of the Year: Vogue India (India)

The WE Journalism Awards was established to recognise and honour outstanding achievements in the reporting on women’s issues as part of Diageo’s ‘Plan W: Empowering Women through Learning’ community initiative. The awards honour the best in journalism across six categories, spanning a range of mediums from print and broadcast to online and photography.

“Journalists are a powerful force whose reporting can compel people to sit up, take notice and create change. Through the Awards, we honour and express our heartfelt gratitude to this brave group of individuals who work tirelessly to uncover stories about prevailing women’s empowerment issues in our society which must be told. Congratulations to all our winners,” said Sam Fischer, President Greater China and Asia, Diageo.

The winners were selected by three luminaries of journalism and social-activism including Monique Villa, CEO of Thomson Reuters Foundation, award-winning independent journalist, Shaili Chopra, and Yan Mei, one of China’s leading media women and Senior Partner at Brunswick Group.

Submissions came from a range of local, regional and international media platforms across 18 participating markets; Australia, Cambodia, China (including Hong Kong), India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, Nepal, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam, over the past year.

Each winning journalist received a cash prize of US$1,000, while the winning media title received a cash prize of US$3,000 to support reporting of a women’s empowerment initiative.

Plan W is part of Diageo’s 2020 sustainability and responsibility targets which aims to build thriving communities. Diageo is committed to diversity for our own business, as well as growing the talents, skills and capability of the women who work within our wider value chain. Launched in 2012, Plan W’s goal is to empower two million women across all socio-economic profiles by 2017 giving them opportunities to learn and develop skills. To date, Plan W has empowered over 90,000 women and created a positive ripple effect that has reached over 450,000 beneficiaries of these women.

Through Plan W, Diageo is also addressing the hospitality industry’s talent needs to ensure long-term sustainable growth. The Gala Dinner followed the launch of a white paper entitled ‘Women in Tourism and Hospitality: Unlocking the Potential in the Talent Pool’ developed by the Hospitality Industry Pipeline (HIP) Coalition along with research partners from the University of Strathclyde and The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Led by Diageo, members of the HIP Coalition include Accor, Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, CARE International and Sala Bai Hotel School.  The Coalition aims to raise awareness of the possible ways to meet the demands of the industry talent shortage by recruiting, retaining and investing in women.


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