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Challenges Deaf writer wins national Media Award

Kuala Lumpur, Oct 26, 2008: CHALLENGES writer James Chua has won the Mercedes-Benz Malaysia Red Ribbon Media Award in Journalism in HIV/AIDS reporting in Malaysia for the print media magazine category (English).

His Winning Entry (heading): HIV/AIDS, a Serious Health Threat in Any Language was published in the very first issue of Challenges Magazine, that is Volume 1/issue 1 April 2008.

We, at Challenges, are so proud of James! Well Done!

The award was presented to James Chua on Saturday, 25th October 2008, at The Grand Ballroom, Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur, during the Red Ribbon Gala 2008 organised by the Malaysian AIDS Foundation in partnership with Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia and Malaysia Tatler in the presence of Guests of Honour, our King and his consort, Seri Paduka Baginda Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Wathiqu Billah Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Mahmud Al-Muktafi Billah Shah & Seri Paduka Baginda Raja Permaisuri Agong Tuanku Nur Zahirah and Patron of MAF, YABhg Datin Paduka Seri Rosmah Mansor.

Also present were Malaysia's former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad with Tun Dr Siti Hasmah, Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir, Chairman of the event, Health Minister Datuk Liow Tiong Lai, and Prof Dr Adeeba Kamarulzaman Chairman, Malaysian AIDS Foundation; as well as Kuala Lumpur’s important personalities and corporate giants in an evening of glamour and philanthropy.

James Chua, who is profoundly deaf and blind in one eye, attended the Challenges Journalism Skills training workshop held last September to motivate and develop writers with disabilities. Since then, he has been contributing articles to Challenges Magazine.

The awards is one of MAC/AMF programmes to raise awareness and fight against the stigma and discrimination of people living with HIV/AIDS.

HIV in Asia Pacific varies between countries, with very low ( Mongolia ) to a generalized epidemic in Papua New Guinea . Approximately 9 million people in the region have been infected since the epidemic appeared more than 20 years ago. Consequently, these awards are aimed at promoting media participation in raising awareness on the human, social and economic tragedy which HIV and AIDS have inflicted on the region.

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