Sunday, June 23, 2024

TFN Heroes Awards: Everything you need to know about the awards, categories and their criteria

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The awards committee of The Fatu Network Heroes Awards has finalised the categories for the top-line awards as well as the criteria. The 5-member committee has identified 10 categories in which a nominee in each category will be awarded.

This year’s event, which is slated for 13 May, is billed to be attended by high-profile figures, businesspeople, top artists, and ordinary Gambians and nominees in 10 different categories will be awarded.

See the different awards categories and their criteria as well as an explanation of the awards committee and the awards procedures below.

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Awards Committee

The members of the awards committee are chosen by The Fatu Network. These individuals are apolitical and have been seen by The Fatu Network as able to demonstrate fair and unbiased judgement in assisting to recognize exemplary Gambians. Once identified, the committee works independently from The Fatu Network. The Fatu Network cannot make any decisions as to who should be awarded or not.

Award Nominations

Essentially, anyone can nominate an individual or group they see fit to receive an award within the applicable category. Prior to the awards, there will be a brief period of time in which the general public has the opportunity to submit nomination suggestions based on the categories and criteria presented. From there, the awards committee will assess all suggestions and ultimately narrow it down to a maximum of 3 candidates for each category.

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Determining Award Winners

Award winners will be determined by both the awards committee (60%) and the general public (40%). Once the nominees for each category are finalized, there will be a public voting poll open which will feature the group/person’s qualifications, work, and accomplishments. There are two methods of voting: an easily accessible online survey and AFRICELL SMS. All will be informed immediately when the polls are open, each individual can only vote ONCE.

Resolving a conflict of interest: If a member of the committee is directly involved with a nominee, they will automatically be excluded from nominating and/or voting in that category.


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Agriculture- Agricultural Leadership Award
. Diaspora Engagement Award
Disabled- Trailblazer Award (Honouring the differently abled)
Education- Education Prize for Excellence Award
Environment- The Green Award
Health- Health Servant of the Year Award
Philanthropy- Philanthropist of the Year Award
Posthumous- Iconic Gambian Award
Youth- Exemplary Youth Award

. Person Of The Year Award

Agricultural Leadership Award

The Agricultural Leadership awardee is one who establishes high-impact achievements in the realm of Gambian agriculture. This group/person’s work has resulted in the demonstrable increase in the quality, quantity and/or availability of consumables for our urban and/or rural society- even more so if their ‘green thumb’ has been able to extend outside of the borders of The Gambia. We are considering the significance of individual achievements, but the complexity of the problem solved will be the most important aspect considered.

Increased production or productivity of crops
Reduced cost of cultivation through the use of sustainable methods
Has reduced poverty, hunger or suffering; or enhanced health, nutrition, quality of life and well being
Uses cutting-edge technology to address food security

Diaspora Engagement

For years, groups and individuals of the Gambian Diaspora have been selflessly and tirelessly contributing to the development of The Gambia from a distance. The Diaspora Engagement Award aims to highlight and showcase this effort! We are not talking of the obligatory remittances sent back to sustain their families back home, but going further by striving to make a difference and actively contributing to the change they want to see.

Donates an extensive amount of time, energy, or money to an underrepresented and underdeveloped cause in The Gambia
Created a group or organization that contributes to the development or advancement of the following sectors: Maternal Health, Education, Science, Poverty, Environment etc.

Education prize for Excellence of the Year

“In a completely rational society, the best of us would be teachers and the rest of us would have to settle for something else” – Lee Iacocca

The Education Prize for Excellence Award aims to highlight and reward a true inspirer in and out of the classroom, we are looking to recognize a teacher, administrator or institution. The importance of the role a teacher and/or institution plays extends far past the textbook and deep into the future of the youth, especially in a society like this where the youth spend a large amount of time under their care. Even more so, in a society like this where the youth account for roughly 60% of the population and are, undoubtedly, the future of The Gambia.

An outstanding Teacher, Administrator or Institution
Proven record of outstanding achievement and leadership in the education sector
Uses modern techniques and innovations to impact knowledge
Achieved significant results (of a class/individual) through their influence
Exposed and encouraged youth to participate in national and international competitions
Overcomes difficult challenges to delivering quality education in a marginalized or disadvantaged community, especially in the rural Gambia


More often than not, environmental causes are neglected and not seen as a pressing enough issue to pursue. This is a wild misconception and approaches the very basis of our homes and livelihoods. The Green Award will highlight and reward the efforts of a group or individual working tirelessly against the odds to ensure that a difference is made in the way we treat our environment. This can be by way of sustainable business solutions, activism, policy or any effective type of outreach being made to change the societal norms in Gambia.

Uses sustainable and innovative means to address environmental challenges
Demonstrated achievements in rolling back the effects of climate change
Initiated a major environmental initiative that addresses and provides sustainable solutions to waste management
Has a proven track record of activism to both educate and inform stakeholders and communities alike on issues affecting our environment

Health Servant of the Year

The Health Servant of the Year award is dedicated to a civil servant promoting or improving the health and well-being of all individuals that cross their paths. Regardless of social background, wealth, status or influence- this individual treats all walks of life as one when it comes to dedicating their time, expertise, and energy.

Makes ‘do’ with limited resources to incite impactful results that save or enhance lives
Shows extraordinary commitment to dispensing healthcare throughout the country
Demonstrates strong leadership that results in significant gains for a health facility
Goes above and beyond in providing greater care, excellent customer service and support for patients during their line of duty
Innovative health administrators and organizations that have made significant contributions to the health sector can also be nominated in this category

Philanthropist of the Year

The Philanthropist of the Year award is presented to an extraordinary individual who has shown outstanding leadership in the area of philanthropy and who, throughout their giving, has made remarkable differences in bringing about sustainable social change.

Giving at the moment is a ‘giving’ that is strategic and long-term
May include an individual, couple or family
Evidence of outstanding civic responsibility as demonstrated by contributions of financial resources and voluntary commitment of time
Willingness to serve in leadership roles and provide vision and the ability to involve others in philanthropic efforts

Trailblazer of the Year (Honoring the differently abled)

The Trailblazer of the Year award is accredited to celebrate and acknowledge a person with a disability who, despite the odds against them, RAISE THE BAR AGAINST THE ONE SET FOR THEM.

Breaks barriers to accomplishing an extraordinary achievement, especially by members of the disability community
Proven record of sustained advocacy or campaign that empowers persons with disability
Emerged as a strong voice for the cause of persons with disability
Donates resources and time to championing the cause of persons with disability
Initiate a project that provides skills for the employability of persons with disability.

Posthumous (inspiring Gambian award)

This award celebrates a person who made numerous sacrifices for the advancement of our society. Life is precious and only true patriots are willing to give it up for the greater good. This award is a nod to not only the selflessness of the recipient but also the inspiring attributes he/she possessed.

Criteria (not limiting):
Lost their life in the previous year (2019)
Led a life of sacrifice and dedication to justice for all or any particular noble cause
Was a voice for the voiceless during their lifetime
Sacrifice resulting in lasting, positive impacts on The Gambian society

Exemplary Youth

The Exemplary Youth Award section is dedicated to a young Gambian who exerts their effort to create positive social, economic and/or environmental change in our society. Making up roughly 60% of the Gambian population the youth are undoubtedly the future, but this person in particular has been demonstrating acute direction regarding solving at least one of the numerous development issues we continue to face. This person’s ideas and actions are innovative, and impactful, and have the potential to bring about true structural and institutional change. We are particularly looking for an individual who has demonstrated: Resourcefulness and Perseverance, Strategy and Bigger Picture, Revolutionary Thinking, and Advocacy.

Aged 15-35
Making a difference in the Gambian society
Has spearheaded urban and/or rural projects/community initiatives
Innovative in Business/Entrepreneurship

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