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Windrush Caribbean Film Festival’s 2024 prestigious awardees named

“Join us at The Ritzy in Brixton for the Fifth Windrush Caribbean Film Festival’s Closing Ceremony! We're thrilled to honour veteran activist Dawn Hill CBE with the Paulette Wilson Justice Award and award-winning journalist Nadine White with the Menelik Shabazz Award for up-and-coming Black British filmmakers.”

BWSMCONTRIBUTOR

Veteran activist Dawn Hill CBE, receives the Paulette Wilson Justice Award and award winning journalist, Nadine White, is given the Menelik Shabazz Award for up-and-coming Black British filmmakers. 

 The honours will be presented at the Fifth Windrush Caribbean Film Festival’s (WCFF) Closing Ceremony at The Ritzy in Brixton today. (30 June 2024)  

Community stalwart, Dawn Hill CBE receives the Paulette Wilson Justice Award.  Dawn is honoured for her sterling work within the community which spans over four decades.

Arguably, one of her major achievements is her staunch leadership in setting up free legal clinics to secure justice for those victimised by the Windrush scandal when she was Chair of Black Cultural Archives.   

Following the death of Windrush campaigner Paulette Wilson the Windrush Caribbean Film Festival created the Paulet Wilson Justice Award in honour of Paulette’s tireless fight against deportation to Jamaica and helping to bring the Windrush scandal to national attention in 2016 following her own personal battle.   

Ansel Wong, Director of WCFF, said “Dawn is Pioneer, Matriarch and Activist all rolled into one. She transcended all barriers with her indomitable spirit and determination to make change. Quietly but robust in her intervention, charming in her championing of her community and assured engaging with power brokers at every level of society. Dawn has stood her ground no matter who she comes in contact with. She is an icon of our Caribbean Diaspora.

There can be no worthier recipient for this year’s Paulette Wilson Justice Award! 

Multiple award winning journalist Nadine White, the Independent newspaper’s Race Correspondent, who became a first-time filmmaker in 2023 with her lauded documentary Barrel Children:

The Families Windrush Left Behind, her moving examination of Caribbean children left behind by their parents who left them to help rebuild Britain after WWII. Nadine receives WCFF’s Menelik Shabazz Award given to an up-and-coming British filmmaker of Caribbean heritage. 

This award is sponsored by WCFF media partner www.alt-africa.com, the luxury bespoke Arts & Culture print and online going out guide celebrating diversity and inclusion in the creative industries. 

Joy Coker, Publisher and Founding Editor of Alt-africa, says “Menelik’s work was about representation and speaking truth to power. He brought important stories to our attention that might have been buried if he followed the status quo. Like Menelik, Nadine’s moving film was powerful storytelling that gives voice to the less represented.” 

Nadine was also the inaugural recipient of the Paulette Wilson Justice Award in 2020. She shared the award with the Guardian’s Amelia Gentleman for their resolute reporting of the Windrush scandal. 

In addition to these two special awards, WCFF is pleased to recognise films from the 30+ films screened at the 2024 Festival. The official WCFF jury voted for Returned from Janet Marrett as the Best Short Film. The Best Feature Film Award was awarded to That Great British Documentary by Joan Hillary and  Best Film was given to Fearless from director Noella Mingo. 

This year’s Festival theme was Transitions & Travels: The Journey Continues with screening in Wales, Birmingham and London as well as online viewing of all films with a Festival Pass.  

WCFF marked Windrush Day with an all day screening of films here at The Ritzy with a 50% discount for over 60s and a very special outdoor screening for the Friends of Windrush Square’s Big Caribbean Lunch on 23 June. 

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