Babishai Niwe Poetry Foundation

Babishai Niwe (BN) Poetry Foundation, formerly “The Beverley Nambozo Poetry Award”, is a poetry foundation that coordinates annual poetry competitions for African poets. It was started by Beverley Nambozo in 2008 as a prize for Ugandan women. In 2014, however, it opened its doors to men and the entire Africa continent. The first Beverley Nambozo Poetry Award was held in 2009.

The BN poetry award begun in 2009, as a prize for short, unpublished poems in English by Ugandan women. Entries must be written on an annual theme. There was no theme in 2009. The theme for 2010 was “money and culture”. The one for 2011 was “hope”. In 2012 the theme was “music”. The theme for 2013 was “Innovation”. The cash prizes for the top three poems were $250, $150, and $100. The prizes and the prize money have since increased, with the winner in 2014 receiving $1000.

The winning poems from 2009 to 2013 were published in an anthology, A Thousand Voices Rising: An anthology of contemporary African poetry.


Year Recipient Nation
2015 Adeeko Ibukun Nigeria
2014 Tom Jalio Kenya
2013 Rashida Namulondo Uganda
2012 Susan Piwang Uganda
2011 Sanyu Kisaka Uganda
2010 Sophie Alal Brenda Uganda
2009 Lillian Aujo Uganda



Back to Awards

Brunel University African Poetry Prize

Brunel University African Poetry Prize is a literary award aimed at the “development, celebration and promotion of poetry from Africa.” The prize is sponsored by Brunel University and partnered by Commonwealth Writers, the Africa Centre UK, and the African Poetry Book Fund USA. It comes with a £3,000 honorarium. It is aimed at unpublished poets with a manuscript of ten poems.

The prize was initiated by British-Nigerian writer Bernardine Evaristo in part to help introduce African poets to readers outside of Africa, saying “It became clear to me that poetry from the continent could also do with a prize to draw attention to it and to encourage a new generation of poets who might one day become an international presence.”

Past Winners

Year Recipient Nation
2015 Safia Elhillo Sudan
Nick Makoha Uganda
2014 Liyou Libsekal Ethiopia
2013 Warsan Shire Somali–British


Back to Awards