WINNERS ANNOUNCED FOR 2023 GLOBAL PLURALISM AWARD
Three winners have been selected as this year’s recipients receiving $50,000 to continue their work towards pluralism
OTTAWA, CANADA, October 25, 2023 – Independent, charitable organization Global Centre for Pluralism today announced the three winners of the 2023 Global Pluralism Award.
- Esther Omam (Cameroon) – peacebuilder, mediator and human rights defender mobilizing women and young people from across Cameroon to advocate for an end to conflict;
- Red de Intérpretes y Promotores Interculturales Asociación Civil (Mexico) – Indigenous youth collective in Oaxaca, Mexico providing otherwise unavailable Indigenous language interpretation to those involved in legal proceedings in Mexico and the United States;
- REFORM: The Palestinian Association for Empowerment and Local Development (Palestine) – non-governmental organization building solidarity between groups in Palestine by empowering them to get involved in social life and influence decision-making.
An independent, international jury of experts selected this year’s three winners and seven honourable mention recipients from among 200 submissions across 60 countries following a rigorous review process. Presented every two years, the Global Pluralism Award celebrates the inspiring and brave work that is helping to build more inclusive societies where diversity is valued and protected.
Dr. Marwan Muasher, Award Jury Chair and Vice President for Studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said, “The Award winners’ work has enormous value in the world today. Pluralism is not embedded in every society or every country in the world. Those who work for pluralism, those who truly believe that diversity is a source of strength and not weakness, need to be acknowledged and celebrated.”
Meredith Preston McGhie, Secretary General of the Global Centre for Pluralism said, “I can think of nothing more important than recommitting to the values of pluralism and encouraging leaders everywhere to do the same. The 2023 Global Pluralism Award winners demonstrate how pluralism can be advanced with creativity and courage. I hope they are seen as examples of the leadership that is possible, even when divisions seem insurmountable.”
Esther Omam said, “This award is a reaffirmation of the value of the concept of ‘Leave no one behind’. That humanity, more than ever before, should always come first. That our diversity is our bond and that, with pluralism, everyone can have a voice. This award symbolizes all that I fight for as a woman, a peacebuilder, and a leader in Cameroon, a country where the acceptance of our diversity and plurality can be a solution to our plight.”
Eduardo Martinez, Director-General and Legal Representative of Red de Intérpretes y Promotores Interculturales Asociación Civil said, “This award offers an opportunity to highlight the struggles of youth in the South, racialized youth who resist the linguistic and cultural oppression of the State and its justice system. We reinvent ourselves, and we fight, together, from our territories.”
Oday Karsh, General Director of REFORM said, “Since its inception, REFORM has been dedicated to promoting diversity and embracing differences as a valuable resource for social and cultural diversity, which in turn fosters solidarity amongst the various components of Palestinian society. We actively combat stereotyping and stigmatisation on all fronts. This award is a testament to our commitment on the right path, and we look forward to it being an international achievement for Palestine. It incentivises us to continue our courageous efforts against exclusion, power asymmetry and marginalisation. It will help in amplifying our voices to demand the restoration of democracy in Palestine.”
The award recipients will be recognized at a ceremony to be held in November in Ottawa, Canada. Each winner will receive $50,000 (CAD) to further their work in support of pluralism.
2023 Global Pluralism Award Honourable Mentions (alphabetical):
Build Up (Kenya/United States/Global) works with peacebuilding institutions and a network of peace innovators to tackle polarization and make peacebuilding processes more inclusive of diverse voices and perspectives with a specific focus on digital technologies.
Deeyah Khan (Norway/United States) is a documentary filmmaker and activist countering extremism and fostering understanding and empathy across ideological, religious and racial divides.
The Global Interfaith Network for People of All Sexes, Sexual Orientations, Gender Identities and Expressions – GIN-SSOGIE (South Africa/Global) supports LGBTIQ+ people of faith from the Global South and East to advocate for an end to violence and persecution against sexual and gender minorities.
India Love Project (India) challenges exclusion and prejudice in India by sharing love stories of non-traditional unions between interfaith, inter-caste and LGBTQ+ couples on social media.
Lea Baroudi (Lebanon) is a peace mediator using art, culture and social enterprise to provide Lebanese youth with the rare opportunity to build a future outside of violent extremism and sectarianism.
Politize! Civic Education Institute (Brazil) is a non-partisan and non-profit organization tackling polarization in Brazil by producing free and unbiased political education, training civic leaders to solve public policy problems and training teachers to educate youth to become engaged citizens.
Touché (Belgium) is a social enterprise providing support to current and former prisoners and at-risk youth and, in the process, advancing a positive view of anger and aggression.
FOR MEDIA INQUIRIES, PLEASE CONTACT:
Senior Manager, Communications and Public Affairs, Global Centre for Pluralism