TORONTO – Last year, Marta Iwanek won the Tom Hanson Photojournalism Award, presented by the Canadian Journalism Foundation (CJF) and The Canadian Press. On Saturday, April 24, she was the recipient of more photography awards.
One was a prize for the best portrait – a photo of a Kenyan girl, Mumtaz Ibrahim, who was born with a disfigured face and underwent surgery in Toronto in March 2015. This photo was included in the National Pictures of the Year winners selected by the News Photographers Association of Canada, Canada’s largest photojournalism competition.
Ms. Iwanek also won first place from the National Press Photographers Association for the Best of Photojournalism, Portrait and Personality, an international award. The photo shows 11-year-old Mykola Nyzhnykovskyi of Ukraine on his bed after being admitted to Shriners Hospitals for Children in Montreal. The Shriners Hospitals agreed to assess and treat Mykola’s prosthetic needs. Ms. Iwanek was working as a freelancer when she took Mykola’s photo, showing a sad result of the ongoing war in Ukraine.
On August 24, 2015, Mykola and his brother were playing near their home in eastern Ukraine when they came across an undetonated grenade. The blast immediately killed his brother; it left Mykola as a triple amputee, missing both his legs and his right arm. He also sustained severe injuries to his face, teeth and eyes.
Thanks to the Ukrainian medical team from Canada that was in Ukraine at the time, which met Mykola, the boy has some hope of regaining the use of his limbs. Mykola is now living in Montreal with his mother.
Ms. Iwanek also received an award for the best Single Multimedia Project for her work on “The Amazing Repair of Charlie’s Tiny Heart” which documented nine-month old Charlie Lefave’s open-heart surgery at Sick Kids.