Mabati Rolling Mills (MRM), a leading manufacturer of Building Solutions and member of the Safal Group®, announced winners of the 2023 Safal Eye in the Wild competition at an award ceremony held at the Norfolk Hotel. Denish Ochieng, Enos Teche, and Abu Mburu won positions 1,2,3 respectively and Vincent Chepkwony won the People’s Choice Award voted by the public.
The esteemed panel of judges, comprised of experts in photography and environmental conservation, faced the challenging task of selecting winners from the numerous impressive entries. The Gold, Silver, Bronze and People’s Choice award winners were revealed during the ceremony, each receiving generous cash prizes of USD 3,000, USD 2,000, USD 1,000 and USD 500 respectively.
The Safal Eye in the Wild Photography Competition, which ran from July 28 to October 15, 2023, received an overwhelming response from photographers, both professional and amateur, across Kenya, South Africa, Uganda, and Tanzania. This year’s theme of, “Drought in Focus,” inspired participants to capture powerful images that depict the harsh realities and the resilience of communities facing the devastating impact of drought in Africa.
The award ceremony honoured the exceptional talent and creativity showcased by the participants. Distinguished guests, industry leaders, environmentalists, and photography enthusiasts gathered to recognize and applaud the winning photographers who skillfully conveyed the urgent need for environmental conservation and sustainable solutions.
Anders Lindgren, Safal Group CEO, expressed his pleasant view of this year’s competition, stating,
“The Safal Eye in the Wild Photography Competition has not only grown in scope but has also become a powerful platform for driving conversations around environmental conservation. Today, we are celebrating those who have used their art to inspire change and raise awareness about the impact of drought on communities.”
Sarit Shah, Chairman of the Safal MRM Foundation, remarked,
“We are proud to witness the impact that this competition has had in fostering a sense of responsibility towards environmental conservation. The award ceremony is not only a celebration of talent but also a call to action, urging all of us to continue working towards a sustainable future.”
In the powerful transformational story behind the winning photograph, the winner, Denish committed to empowering a retired forester, Dabaso Kantoma Sora in Northern Kenya who plants indigenous, drought-resisting trees in the North Horr town at the edge of Chalbi desert. The Safal Group in addition generously committed to supporting Dabaso’s transformative journey by contributing Kshs 200,000.
The Chief Guest, Dickson Ritan, the Deputy Director, Parks and Reserves, Kenya Wildlife Services lauded the initiative as one that continues to support environmental conservation at a critical time when national disasters such as drought have affected Kenya.
The ceremony showcased highlights from the submitted photographs, providing a visual narrative of the competition’s journey and the stories captured through the lenses of talented photographers.