Individuals, businesses and organizations from across Central and Eastern Europe witnessed their work being recognized at the 4th Emerging Europe Awards Gala, which took place on 15 September in Brussels.
The work of more than 60 NGOs, companies and individuals from across Central and Eastern Europe was recognized in Brussels on 15 September at the Emerging Europe Awards 2021, the fourth edition of the programme, which highlights best practices, innovation and courage across the region.
The winners, divided into the five pillars of Europe’s development, based on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (People, Planet, Prosperity, Partnership, Peace), were first selected by the global community for the development of Europe: a total of more than 8000 votes for different candidates.
The BBC presented the awards to the BBC’s Cassia Madeira.
“Our awards have always meant a lot to the winners, but I think their awareness this year that when our community chooses them makes them even more special,” said Andrew Wrobel, founder of Emerging Europe.
people and planet
Among the winners of the People Hub Forum was Youth Cancer Europe, a youth-led community of cancer patients and survivors working to improve the lives of people diagnosed with the disease, which was selected as the best health and social care initiative of the year.
“We are located in Romania, but we operate all over Europe,” said Victor Gerbo of Youth Cancer Europe. “We believe everyone has the right to cancer treatment.”
AsperIT, the Wroclaw organization that trains people with Asperger’s to work in the IT field, was also awarded as the winner of this year’s Emerging Europe Youth Empowerment Initiative.
Meanwhile, the Women’s Coding School, a Georgian NGO that teaches coding for women and girls, won this year’s Future of Education initiative, and Serbian artist Andrej Josefovsky won the Art Prize for Saving Our Home, an image made of 4,000 plastics. . Bottles to celebrate World River Day.
In the Planet column, Respect Energy, the only company in Poland that obtains and sells energy exclusively from renewable sources, won the green energy initiative, while the Slovenian NGO Ekologi Brez Meja (A world working in an environment without borders) adopted a sustainable lifestyle.
The People-First Economy Award is one of six categories for prosperity and has been awarded to the East Europe Foundation, a Ukrainian NGO also operating in Belarus and Moldova, which invests in local initiatives for private enterprise development, public policy and civil society.
Other winners are Sygic, an automated navigation system from Slovakia that makes travel more sustainable, which was announced as the European World Champion of the Year, and the Social Impact Award, which operates education and incubation programs in more than 15 countries in Europe, Africa and Asia. Supporting Pioneers In social work in its early stages.
Meanwhile, French energy company Eurocape was the foreign investor of the year in the region, estimating its efforts to provide clean and cheap energy to more than 200,000 households in Ukraine through the Zaporozhye wind farm.
For the second year in a row, the Estonian Investment Agency won the Investment Promotion Agency award, while Lod Aud took the Best Business Friendly City award: two categories of winners were determined by empirical research for developing Europe.
Partnership and Peace
At the Partnership Center, the EIT Regional Health Innovation Scheme was awarded the Regional Cooperation Initiative of the Year award, while the Polish Code of Conduct on Health was awarded the Modern and Future Policy Initiative award.
At the Peace Hub, this year’s Democracy, Human Rights and Rule of Law Initiative Award was given to a nationwide women’s strike to fight Poland’s increasingly restrictive anti-abortion laws, while Belarusian news channel NEXTA won the award for Media Freedom and Responsible Reporting.
“The battle continues,” Marta Limbarova said of the women’s strike across Poland. Argentine women have been fighting for 15 years to legalize abortion. We are ready to do the same. “
Several individual awards were also handed out, with the Belarusian opposition at the fore again.
Svetlana Tikanovskaya, the de facto leader of the country’s opposition movement, has been named Emerging Europe Person of the Year in recognition of her tireless efforts to preserve the country’s struggle for freedom and democracy in the eyes of the international public since the fraud. Presidential elections in August 2020.
Although Belarusian dictator Alexander Lukashenko was declared the winner of the election with 80 percent of the vote, Tikanovskaya was the de facto winner by almost any objective measure.
“It is an honor and a privilege to win the Public Person of the Year award,” said Tikanovskaya, who was forced into exile shortly after the election.
“When I joined the presidential campaign in the summer of 2020, I was afraid, but wanted to help,” added Tikanovskaya, who gave the award to her husband, Sergei Tikanovsky, who is still in prison in Belarus.
Together, we have shown the world the power that participatory democracy can unleash. My only role as a leader is to listen to people, listen to their voices, and use the power of collective intelligence. “
Another winner – awardee of the year – was Vera Platon of VISA for her continued support of women entrepreneurs across the region.
Meanwhile, Edita Velic, one of the youngest politicians in Bosnia and Herzegovina, was voted as the most influential figure of the year for a campaign to encourage young women to participate in a male-dominated political environment.
Finally, two eminent personalities from the worlds of international finance and medical sciences have been selected as winners of the 2021 Professor Günter Verheugen and Princess Marina Stords Prizes for Emerging Europe.
The Professor Günther Verheugen Prize is awarded to outstanding individuals from outside Europe who have contributed to prosperity and peace in the region, this year to Sir Sumo Chakrabarti, former President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), while he was at Princess Marina. The Stordza Prize, which is given to outstanding individuals in the region who have contributed to its prosperity, science, culture and peace, and is given by Professor Catalin Cariko, whose work was the basis for the Covid-19 vaccine.
The full list of winners for the Emerging Europe Awards 2021:
Technical success: Save our house
Health and social care: European Cancer Youth
Empowering youth: roughness
Education for the future: Programming School for Girls
green energy: Respect the energy
sustainable lifestyle: Ecologists Without Borders (Ekológi Brez Meja)
The economy of the people comes first. East European Foundation
complex business: Sina Social Impact
foreign investor: Eurocop
World Champion: Sygic
Investment Promotion Agency: Estonian Investment Agency
Business friendly city: bed
Regional Cooperation: Regional Innovation Plan for Health in Transformation
Drawing modern and future policies: Polish Code of Conduct in Health Care
Democracy, human rights and the rule of law: All-Poland women’s strike
Media Freedom and Responsible Reporting: the following
General nature of the year: Svetlana Tichanovska
Cena profesora Günthera Verheugena: Sir Soma Chakrabarti
Marina Stordza Price: Katalin Kariko
business man: Vera Platon
Young influencer: Edita Felich
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