Encouraging grassroot workers is empowering, says Shabana Azmi

Shabana Azmi

New Delhi : Veteran actress and social activist Shabana Azmi, who felicitated community frontline workers and volunteers here on Friday, says it is important to recognise those who work tirelessly and selflessly for the betterment of society.

Shabana, along with NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant, gave away the Plan India Impact Awards 2018 here.

The awards were given out in the presence of Govind Nihalani, Chair Emeritus, Plan India Governing Board and Rathi Vinay Jha, Chairperson, Plan India Governing Board.

Shabana said in a statement: “This is my second year with the Plan India Impact Awards. I have seen the awards concept growing. What really defines these awards is the cause. There are very few platforms where the spotlight is on the people who tirelessly work behind the scenes expecting nothing in return.

“In my long journey as a social activist, I see that the grassroot workers are always at the forefront helping local communities to bring positive and sustainable change.”

“It is remarkable to see how a little bit of encouragement generates a different level of confidence and a true sense of empowerment in these community leaders,” she added.

The Awards this year has increased its reach from 13 states in 2017 to 22 states this year.

Bhagyashri Dengle, Executive Director, Plan IndiaAsays that “Plan India is committed towards building a strong linkage between communities and government service providers at village, district, state and national level to reach the most disadvantaged sections of society.”

“The Plan India Impact Awards is a demonstration of this commitment. It acknowledges the outstanding efforts of community frontline workers and volunteers while encouraging documentation and dissemination of best practices. It is an ongoing exercise which is witnessing great acceptance from all sections and we hope to continue the same going forward,” she said.

Kanaklata Raula from Odisha won in the Anganwadi Worker category. She has spent 24 years of her life for women and child healthcare information and support.

She said: “It is encouraging to receive such a national level recognition. I believe our role is critical in both a mother’s and child’s wellbeing and this recognition will not only motivate me but also my co-workers.”

On receiving the award in the Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) category, Anupam Singh from Uttar Pradesh who is dedicated to health related needs of the community, said: “I consider it as my duty to selflessly serve our fellow community members and I like it when people respect us for our knowledge and services that we provide.”

All of 21, Pari Singh from Jharkhand who received the Youth Champion for Girls’ Rights honour, spoke out for the work that needs to be done in the area of gender equality, girl’s education, hygiene and sanitation.

Amongst the other categories, from Odisha, Pitabas Majhi was awarded for his contribution as an Outreach Worker and Bhagirathi Moharana was awarded in the Community Volunteer category. The Best School Management Committee was awarded to Jhajju, Bikaner district, Rajasthan and the Best Child Welfare Committee was given to Thane, Mumbai, Maharashtra.



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