FAO Regional Office for Near East and North Africa

FAO launches the first round of Media award in the Near East and North Africa

FAO three regional initiatives, UN SDGs and Decade of Action on Nutrition are main topics of the Award

@fao rne Managing water scarcity starts with behaviour change

06 April, 2016 / Cairo – TheFood and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations "FAO" announced launching the first round of the Near East and North Africa Media Award that will reward the contributions of journalists in raising awareness on the major challenges facing the region in relation to : water scarcity and sustainable agriculture water management;  Eradication of food insecurity and malnutrition; building resilience and achieving the Sustainable Development Goal 2 in the context of crisis and conflicts; Sustainable development of  small scale agriculture for inclusive economic growth, eradicating rural poverty, rural gender inequalities,  youth unemployment and migration.

The award also aims to increase the awareness amongst the public on the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, in particular those related to FAO’s mandate: end poverty in all of its forms everywhere (SDG1); end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture (SDG2); ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all (SDG 6); ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all (SDG7); ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns (SDG12) take urgent actions to combat climate change and its impacts (SDG13); conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development (SDG14); protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss (SDG15).

In addition , the award will encourage creative communication throughout the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition (2016 to 2025), adopted recently by The United Nations General Assembly, and described by FAO as a major step towards mobilizing action around reducing hunger and improving nutrition around the world.

Mr. Abdessalam Ould Ahmed, FAO Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative for the Near East and North Africa said: “This award aims at encouraging journalists to play their vital role in highlighting the issues of relevance to their communities, especially the topics related to agriculture, nutrition and  sustainable management of natural resources.”

Mr. Ould Ahmed added: “by launching this award, FAO isn’t seeking for boosting its own presence in the media, but it looks forward towards becoming a trustworthy and reliable reference to journalists, by informing them of our latest reports and facilitating their access to our pool of technical experts in all fields related to FAO’s mandate.”

RNE Communication team will prepare a media friendly document on the FAO regional initiatives (RIs) which have been developed with the member countries in the region to address the above  challenges. This document will be supported by a digital platform, allowing information exchange, photo gallery, database and other relevant information.

Journalists will be asked to participate individually or collectively, through direct communication with RNE Communication Office, which will act as the award’s secretariat.

Open to journalists of the RNE region, this award will allow journalists to compete in Arabic, French and English. It will be a biennial award, except for the first round when the first award will be presented on World Food Day 2016 at October 16th.

It will be presented in even years, to differentiate it from the dates of the A. H. Boerma Award , FAO journalist award which is presented in odd numbered years.

The winner will be announced in September, and will be rewarded in his country of residence by the FAO Representative during WFD celebrations.

The Jury will consist of FAO RNE ADG, the Regional Initiative Delivery Manager, one representative from FAO Office of Corporate Communication, one representative of the Regional Communication Office, as well as renowned journalists.

Interested journalists are requested to communicate with the award’s secretariat at

 [email protected]