The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, WAN-IFRA, has chosen The Hindu, along with seven other newspapers in India, for a prize for excellence in youth engagement. It has also named India the World Young Reader Country of the Year.
The award criteria included editorial content strategy targeting the young, and the use of printed or digital newspaper content in the teaching of media literacy or of any other subject, and activities that give young people opportunities to experience professional newspaper journalism.
Aralynn McMane, WAN-IFRA’s executive director for youth engagement and news literacy, said: “The Hindu has a history of not only solid journalism but also clear concern for the youth in its region, a concern that has attracted high praise at the global level.”
The jury said in a statement: “As a combined group, the entries from Malayala Manorama, The Times of India, The Telegraph, Mathrubhumi, Dainik Bhaskar , inext, The Hindu and Ebela exhibit a powerhouse of creativity and real commitment to the young people of your country, being right there every time there is a ‘first’ in a person’s life.”
In 2011, WAN-IFRA awarded a prize to The Hindu in the brand category, for the Aviva Book Wall campaign, a book donation drive that managed to collect 275,000 books in five days, to be distributed among under-privileged children. Unused or damaged books were recycled to make notebooks.
The Hindu offers a tailored broadsheet edition for school students, The Hindu in School. It is distributed through participating schools. Launched in 2012, it has a rising circulation among 12- to 16-year-olds. Partners help produce content, including a ‘Storyboard’ page that encourages storytelling, an ‘Earth Watch’ page of environmental wonders and warnings, and a ‘Health’ page. Related workshops help teachers better use newspapers in class.
The Hindu runs a Newspaper in Education (NiE) programme that engages school students. The Hindu has a weekly Young World supplement, launched in 1990, that counts children in the 6-13 age group as its primary readers. Its weekly Education Plus supplement targets the youth, also through periodic interactive events.