German development media awards Hanan Khandagji, Jordan
DW.DE – While still young, 24, and fresh out of college, Hanan Khandagji has sought out several difficult subjects to report on as she has embarked on her career. She is an investigative journalist at Radio Al Balad and amman.net where she works on features. Now she is busy examining the biggest camp for Syrian refugees in Jordan, called Zaatari. She also works for the Areej Network for Journalism Investigation and with the BBC Jordan bureau.
Khandagji earned a business degree last year, but is also interested in humanitarian topics and would one day like to host a television program that looks at social issues.
Her winning entry, an online feature that took more than a year to research, looks at the abuse suffered by disabled children in private institutions in Jordan. The country has around 45 of these centers, each of which cares for five to 154 young people. But that “care” is often marked by slaps, beatings, verbal abuse and neglect. While these centers rarely allow visitors, and then only on pre-determined days, Khandagji researched undercover as a volunteer, seeing the mistreatment first hand. When asked about the abuse, Jordanian authorities simply pointed fingers at other government agencies instead of addressing the problem. Her story gained the attention of the BBC, which later helped her turn it into a TV documentary.For a full investigation