A JOURNALIST for the Sunday National has scooped two nominations for best feature in the Refugee Festival Scotland Media Awards.

Nan Spowart has taken two of the four nominations in the best feature category for her work with our Sunday edition.

The first nomination was for a feature piece about Ukrainian refugee Tetiana Lukianenko and her one-year-old son, Mark, who had found a new home in Highland Perthshire.

Nan reported how Tetiana was the first refugee to arrive in Aberfeldy after the entire town pulled together in an incredible community effort which has settled 70 people fleeing Ukraine.

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And she scored a second nomination in the features category for her report on how Afghan refugees were being helped to score top marks in their Scottish school exams by an afterschool club.

Nan spoke to Abdul Bostani, the founder of the charity Glasgow Afghan United, about how the club was helping as many as 150 Afghan children keep in touch with their roots while also flying high in Scotland’s education system.

Her top journalism was recognised by the Refugee Festival Scotland Media Awards 2023 with the two nominations.

In Nan’s category, Patricia-Ann Young from The Sunday Post was nominated for a story on refugees singing alongside the Scottish Opera, and Juliana da Penha from Migrant Women Press was nominated for a report on how the cost of living crisis was impacting on asylum-seeker mothers.

Elsewhere in the nominations, three former National staff have been nominated for their work in their new roles. Kirsteen Paterson is nominated in the news category, and Angus Cochrane and Karin Goodwin are up against each other in the investigation category.

The Scottish Refugee Council, which organises the awards in partnership with the National Union of Journalists, said it was celebrating the “exemplary work of journalists in Scotland covering refugee and asylum issues”.

The charity’s CEO, Sabir Zazai, described this year's shortlist as "an impressive and crucial contribution" to the dialogue around people seeking protection in the UK.

He added: "It has never been more important to report to tell the stories of people seeking sanctuary in a responsible way that puts the people behind the headlines first."

The ceremony will take place on June 15.

The full shortlist can be found here.