By IH 11/05 Updated: 14/05 09:35
THE POWER of her pen saw Harbury teenager Alice Woodhouse scoop a prestigious national reporting award.
The 17-year-old was named Amnesty International’s Young Human Rights Reporter of the Year at a ceremony in London.
The competition attracted over 3,000 entries from across the UK and was split into four categories, from primary to sixth form. Alice taking top spot in the latter.
Alice, a student at King's High School in Warwick, impressed judges with her 500 word report on prejudice suffered by Roma, Gypsy and Traveller communities.
The results of the competition - run in collaboration with the Guardian Teacher Network and the education weekly SecEd - were announced at a ceremony at Amnesty's UK’s headquarters.
A delighted Alice said: “I was utterly gobsmacked and exhilarated and rather surprised. I honestly though it was not going to be Alice Woodhouse. I had read all the other pieces and they were very very good.
“Being a journalist is something I have always wanted to be. And this has given me the confidence to go for it. It feels like that is no longer such a far-flung dream and that I have a real hope of achieving it.”
Kate Allen, director of Amnesty International UK, said the organisation was proud to be encouraging the next generation of human rights journalists.
She added: “Reporters play a vital role in shining a spotlight on the appalling human rights abuses that happen every day across the globe – issues that Amnesty frequently campaigns upon.
“And hopefully the entrants into the Young Human Rights Reporter of the Year can take up that mantle in the years ahead.
“In just over two weeks’ time we will be hosting Amnesty’s Media Awards, which celebrates the work of professional reporters. It is my hope that, in the future, some of today’s winners will grace that stage too.”
Alice's teacher Kathy Hewitt said Alice was a keen supporter of Amnesty, and brought a critical mind to issues together with sensitivity.
The judges included Ian Cobain, senior reporter for The Guardian; Emily Drabble, contributing editor of The Guardian Teacher Network; Anna Perera, author of Guantanamo Boy; and Nicky Parker and Niall Couper from Amnesty International.
Read our previous story on Alice at http://leamingtonobserver.co.uk/2012/03/15/news-My-big-fat-gypsy-rights-campaign-32877.html
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