Farhana Roshan, one of the most ardent youth advocates for children has overcome many struggles, from leaving her country under duress, to emerging as a champion for girls’ education among the Rohingya refugee community. She recently received the Exemplary Child Advocate (achiever) award for her commitment towards the inclusion of even the last child. The award carries a purse of Rs 1,00,000.
THE JUST RIGHT KIDS AWARDS, organized by PRATYeK, honors children, who are proactively working on climate change, inclusion, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and child rights, with special emphasis on the most vulnerable. The award also honors the memory and work of Thomas Chandy, a child rights advocate and the founder CEO of Save the Children, India.
Speaking on the occasion Ms Chandy said: “I remember a quote by my late husband, Thomas Chandy. Speaking from the tea gardens of Assam once he said, 'so, when we reach out for that cup of tea, remember there are stories of exploitation across the tea gardens'. My husband’s self proclaimed life mission was to reach “every last child wherever she or he may be”. These awards encompass the essence of his work, and each and every child present here and working for the cause of child rights, and nominated for this award, is the star of the evening.” Ms. Chandy took the opportunity to also talk about the biography of her husband, the proceeds of which would be dedicated to the award.
The categories of the award span over the following - Pro-Activist of the Earth, Defender of Child Rights, Advocate for the Inclusion of the Last Child, Challenger Braving All Odds, Exemplary Child Advocate and Choice of the People.
The jury comprised Poorna Malavath, the youngest girl ever to scale Mount Everest; Amrita Singh, Communication Officer, CAP, UNICEF India; Radhika Suri, Director of Environmental Education, WWF-India; Monica Chandy, consultant neurologist trained at the AIIMS; Sudarshan Suchi, Chief Executive Officer, Save the Children, India; Annabel Mehta, who has been working for underprivileged communities in India for over 40 years and Swarnalaxmi, first child Prime Minister with visual impairment of the National Inclusion Children's Parliament.
Renata Dessallien, UN Resident Coordinator; Poorna Malavath, mountaineer; Boman Irani, noted film and theatre actor, voice-over artist and photographer; Swaroop Sampat, actress and Board Member, Save the Children India; Leslee Lewis, singer and composer; Ridhima Pandey, an Environmental Activist and Jessica Dewhurst, Queens Young Leader Awardee were present at the award ceremony.
The winners in each category won a cash prize of Rs 25,000. The most promising child advocate, in each category, won a cash prize Rs 10,000. Vihaan Aggarwal from Shri Ram School, Moulsari, received the most promising child award in the over-all category and won a cash prize of Rs. 30,000. All short listed nominees were awarded certificates, and a mentorship sponsored by Save the Children, India.