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April 17, 2002

Center for Communication Programs Wins Two Gold Quill Awards from IABC

Winners Include Programs to Empower Arab Women and Preserve Coral Reefs

The Center for Communication Programs at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health was awarded Gold Quill Awards for 2002 for two innovative communication projects, the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) announced this week.

The documentary training program Arab Women Speak Out, led by Bushra Jabre and Carol Underwood, won an award of Excellence, while the SeKarang! coral reef preservation campaign in Indonesia, under the direction of Douglas Storey, won an award of Merit. Both programs competed in the category of Economic, Social, and Environmental Development/Third World Development. Of the 1,347 entries received this year, 46 received top awards for Excellence and 79 received awards of Merit.

The winners will be recognized June 10 at a gala awards banquet in Chicago that will be held during the IABC's annual international conference. Selected as one of the top five entries, Arab Women Speak Out will be highlighted at the awards banquet.

Since its launch in the winter of 1999, Arab Women Speak Out has helped more than 80,000 women in Jordan, Yemen, Egypt, Lebanon, Tunisia, and Palestine overcome social, economic, educational, and political obstacles to participate more fully in family and community affairs. It comprises a series of 10 video profiles, training and discussion materials, a tool for monitoring the image of women in the media, and a case study publication of 30 women from five Arab countries. Produced by Arab women researchers and film producers, these materials are now being used by 25 local non-governmental and governmental organizations to guide training workshops at the community level in 10 Arab countries, to help women achieve self-empowerment.

Arab Women Speak Out has been supported by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the European Union, AGFUND, and INVESTCORP. Among collaborating agencies are the Egyptian Ministry of Health, the Lebanese Ministry of Social Affairs, the Jordanian Ministry of Islamic Affairs, and other NGOs.

SeKarang! is a communication program designed to build public support for community-based management of marine ecosystems -- specifically coral reefs -- through an integrated mass media, public relations, and community mobilization strategy. Campaign materials build on the theme "Selamatkan Terumbu Karang -- SeKarang!" (Save the Coral Reefs -- NOW!). SeKarang! is a play on words combining the Indonesian words for coral (karang) and now (sekarang).

A very popular TV spot features the project's computer-animated coral and fish mascots, Uka and Iki. Radio spots feature a coral reef song specially commissioned for the project. The song has been recorded in several different musical styles corresponding to regional tastes.

Besides mass media, the SeKarang! campaign mounted a variety of publicity events, often using an entertainment-education approach, to gain the attention of the general public and key opinion leaders and to involve them in coral reef management issues. School-based programs using an educational coral reef ecosystem board game ("Me and My Coral Reef"), and collaborations with local NGOs on community workshops rounded out the program.

SeKarang! is part of the 15-year Coral Reef Rehabilitation and Management Program (COREMAP), which is supported by the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, and the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), and implemented by the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI).

For more than 25 years, IABC's Gold Quill Awards program has been the hallmark of excellence in business communication. The Gold Quill Awards program is IABC's annual international competition that offers professional communicators an opportunity to have their work evaluated by an expert panel of judges. IABC is a not-for-profit international network of professionals committed to improving organizational effectiveness through strategic communication. It began in 1970 and has grown to more than 13,700 members worldwide, with an annual operating budget of U.S. $5.1 million.

JHU/CCP is a pioneer in the field of strategic, research-based communication for behavior change and health promotion that has helped advance the theory and practice of public health communication. With representatives in more than 30 countries, JHU/CCP has been a leader in the development of projects based on systematic needs assessments and clear strategies for positioning and presenting the benefits of health interventions to appropriate audiences.

Kim Martin
 Chief, Media Relations and Advocacy
 Center for Communication Programs
 Johns Hopkins University
 111 Market Place
 Baltimore, Maryland 21202
 (410) 659-6140
Fax (410) 659-6266

Public Affairs Media Contacts for the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health: Tim Parsons or Ming Tai @ 410.955.6878 or