bdnews24.com showing way to do child journalism: Hasan01 January 2021 bdnews24.com
By encouraging child journalism in Bangladesh, bdnews24.com has played the role of a pioneer in the field, Information Minister Hasan Mahmud has said.
"bdnews24.com has shown the way to many by encouraging child journalism," he remarked at a virtual ceremony to award the best reporters of the year from Hello, the news publisher's website dedicated for child journalists.
"And this programme with child journalists is also exceptional. Such efforts to honour the child journalists and build them as journalists per excellence…such an event to award them are truly praiseworthy," he said.
Launched on Mar 31, 2013, the Hello (webshttps://hello.bdnews24.com/) involves children and adolescent journalists in content development, starting from newsgathering to presentation on the website.
bdnews24.com, the first internet newspaper of the country, is administering the news website for children.
Those below 18 years old and willing to become a voice of children through writings are eligible to join the team of child journalists.
The minister said child journalism is a great platform to wean children off social media addiction, which he said was hampering their growth.
"Children and adolescents do not read books nowadays like they used to. They don't write. Bringing them out of that and teaching them journalism - I thank you for this," he said.
A mix of patriotism, values and merit is a must for the children to grow up as complete human beings, he said and added that this combination should be in the writings of the child journalists.
"Then they will be able to show the way to their classmates and playmates," Hasan Mahmud said.
The minister advised the children to dream for the country, state and society, not only for themselves. "The dreams of society, nation and state will come true if your own come true."
"I hope someone among you will become a renowned writer like Muhammed Zafar Iqbal, or a renowned journalist or an intellectual," he said.
Writer Professor Muhammed Zafar Iqbal also joined the event. He said: "We could not even think about doing journalism when we were children. There were many newspapers, but who would publish our writings!
"And now you can write, submit your video clips. You have got a great opportunity," he said, advising the child journalists to make the most of this opportunity. "This extraordinary training will help you throughout your lives. You will be able to see things objectively, analyse, write and express yourselves beautifully. What a great opportunity!"
Describing the work to manage Hello as a difficult task, he congratulated bdnews24.com for the "great" initiative. "They (bdnews24.com) are very dear to me. I visit (the site) numerous times a day to see what is happening. I am grateful to them for letting us see everything in their beautiful news portal."
Before announcing the names of the awardees, bdnews24.com's Editor-in-Chief Toufique Imrose Khalidi said the news publisher prides itself on the work of its child journalists.
"It's because you work better than us. Your reportage has brought big changes at the policy level," he said.
Hello's child journalists wrote about how politically influential people grabbed a school's land, or how Tk 100 fines to penalise absence of students at a school in a remote village imperilled the poor parents, prompting authorities to quickly resolve the problems.
Over the past eight to nine years, bdnews24.com has trained thousands of child journalists, who are doing "the impossible" now. "They are the best of the best."
National cricketer Taskin Ahmed and Hello's Acting Executive Editor Suliman Niloy joined the virtual event to encourage the children.
Fifteen child journalists have been chosen for the Hello awards this year.
Rafsan Nijhum and Gargi Tonusree Paul of Dhaka, Nusrat Islam Trisha of Bagerhat, Sheikh Nasir Uddin of Tangail, and Mahbuba Tabassum Ema of Feni have jointly won the first prize.
Ashiquzzaman Ashique and Sharifuzzaman Bappy of Rajshahi, Ajmal Tanzim Shakir and Khadizatul Kobra Rafa of Dhaka, and Lakshmipur's Md Mamun have become the runners up.
Rupkotha Rahman of Dhaka, Sylvia Rani Tirki of Rangpur, Tasnuva Mehzabin of Khulna, and Sirajganj's Dwin Mohammad Sabbir and Nirbir Saha have won the third prize.
The first prize winners will get Tk 15,000, runners up Tk 10,000 and those winning the third place will get Tk 5,000 along with certificates.