Miss Rontziokos has been recognised for a recent article in The Greek Herald which investigated the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia’s (GOAA) ‘Certificate of death and funeral service.’
The investigation found families were expected to pay $250 for a funeral certificate that was not officially recognised in Australia nor Greece. The cost of the certificate was also found to be five times the amount compared to a government-issued death certificate in Australia and Greece.
In a statement to The Greek Herald, Miss Rontziokos said she was “extremely humbled” to be recognised in the Awards for the investigation.
“I could not have received such a nomination without the support and guidance of my team at The Greek Herald,” the university student said.
“To be recognised by an established institution of investigative journalism is a highlight of the beginning of my journalism career.”
Miss Rontziokos said she hopes her nomination “brings more attention to the issue within our church community and calls for change.”
The 20-year-old has been named finalist in the Democracy Watchdog Awards among other students from Victoria and Queensland, including Rose Innes, Gwen Liu, and Jonathan Weitz-Freeman.
The awards recognise investigative journalism by students. The winner will be announced on December 8 and they will receive $1000 and a trophy. Finalists will receive highly commended certificates.