Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) has announced the inception of Tanzania’s first independent media awards, aimed at promoting domestic tourism and the conservation of national parks. The first annual TANAPA Media Awards will take place next year, and the organization is already accepting entries from both print and electronic media that were printed or aired in 2012. Winners will be determined from two categories: the conservation of natural parks and natural resources, and the promotion of domestic tourism. Paschal Shelutete, TANAPA Public Relations Manager, said of the competition, “Entries are accepted from radio, television, and newspapers (or magazines) and there shall be three winners from print and electronic media in each of the two categories; in total we shall have 18 winners.” TANAPA plans to create more awards categories in the future to invite greater participation. Cash prizes will be awarded, along with certificates, and visits to tourist attractions in the South African Development Community (SADC) region.
TANAPA made the decision to replace its sponsorship of the tourism category of the annual Tanzania Media Council awards with this new independent initiative, in the interest of raising public awareness surrounding conservation issues relating to the parks and boosting domestic tourism.