• Caroline has received several grants and training from EJN on how to cover environmental issues, particularly the illegal wildlife trade. 

Caroline Chebet, who also doubles up as a second-year student at Kabarak University, Department of Mass Communication, has been awarded the Excellence in Biodiversity reporting during the Earth Journalism Network's 20th anniversary on May, 16, 2024. The event took place at Palo Alto in California.

EJN noted that part of Caroline's investigative stories on species that often do not receive highlights in the media has brought about a change in policies.

In 2022, Caroline investigated the trafficking of African grey parrots in Kenya, exposing the trafficking routes, policy loopholes and how cyber criminals were leveraging on the internet to exploit the endangered bird. The story inspired a change in policies after the Kenyan government outlawed the ownership of unregistered parrots.

"Caroline reports on less highlighted biodiversity issues. After her investigative story highlighted the issue, the Kenyan government recently banned the ownership of unregistered African grey parrots. Journalists often dream that their reporting leads to positive change and policies that help communities. We are so glad that Caroline's reporting did exactly that, " Joydeep Gupta, India's Earth Journalism Network manager said during the event.

Caroline has received several grants and training from EJN on how to cover environmental issues, particularly the illegal wildlife trade.

"She has done excellent work with this support, producing stories that have had a real impact on Kenyan policies and regulations regarding the management wildlife, including rare birds," EJN director James Fahn said.

In her speech, Caroline outlined that her focus lies on the often-overlooked realm of biodiversity.

"We hear a lot about lions and elephants, the giants of the savanna. But what about the smaller wonders, the unsung heroes? The disappearance of a tiny bird, the resilience of a tortoise, the playful dance of wild dogs, or the vibrant chorus of frogs – symphonies often drowned out by the noisy world – these are the stories I chase," Caroline said.

She added that, "This award is a celebration of those tiny stories, the ones that ripple outwards, making a difference in the wild world and beyond. Today, I raise a glass to the power of passion and the magic of small beginnings that bloom into something extraordinary. Let's keep telling those stories, wild and wonderful, because they matter."

While Caroline is based outside Nairobi, she emphasized on the critical role journalists based in counties play in highlighting stories that otherwise often go unheard.

"Through EJN's unwavering support, I realized the immense potential I have as a journalist working outside a major city center. They empowered me to tell stories that might otherwise go unheard, stories that matter deeply. This motivates me to keep searching, to keep listening for those often-overlooked voices," she added.

She also highlighted the critical role of editors and mentors in highlighting biodiversity stories.

"The byline might say my name, but the truth is, the best stories I tell are a symphony of voices. To the chorus of mentors who saw the spark and fanned it into a flame, my deepest gratitude," she added.

Caroline's work has been in the limelight in the past few years after bagging a development reporting award in 2021 and being named the first runners up in the same category in 2023 during the Media Council of Kenya's Annual Journalism Excellence Awards.