Herald: NGO in Goa finalist for Social Entrepreneur of the Year India 2018 Award
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NGO in Goa finalist for Social Entrepreneur of the Year India 2018 Award

09 Oct 2018 04:01am IST

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09 Oct 2018 04:01am IST

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Jessica Mayberry and Stalin K of Video Volunteers - Goa are finalists of Social Entrepreneur of the Year (SEOY) India 2018 Award. This was announced by the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, the sister organisation of the World Economic Forum and the Jubilant Bhartia Foundation of Jubilant Bhartia Group on Monday

The SEOY India Award brings some of the most

remarkable change-makers from the country onto a common platform. These social entrepreneurs are promising change-makers and self-starters, with a strong inclination towards addressing the most pertinent needs of the marginalised communities in both, scalable and sustainable ways. Their endeavours encapsulate alleviating poverty, hunger, gender inequality, promoting women empowerment and education. These social entrepreneurs are the torch-bearers who have taken the onus of working towards managing micro-finance needs and daunting challenges like climate change. The tenets of this year’s finalists are aligned with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. They have demonstrated their unwavering commitment in finding answers to new age problems with their technology driven, scalable, sustainable and innovative solutions.

Over the years, SEOY India Award is one of the most reputed and coveted award for country’s social entrepreneurs. The Award bestows adulation and honours the finest model in social entrepreneurship and the entrepreneur who have been instrumental in nurturing a dream of articulating value for their community. The three finalists of 2018 are working with the Government as well as Private Partnerships to herald grass-root transformations, through their enterprise and sustainable models.

The Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, the sister organisation of the World Economic Forum and the Jubilant Bhartia Foundation of Jubilant Bhartia Group on Monday announced the finalists for the SEOY award.

The three finalists are: Jessica Mayberry and Stalin K of Video Volunteers (VV), Goa; Smita Ram and Ramakrishna NK of Rang De, Bengaluru and Prema Gopalan of Swayam Shikshan Prayog (SSP), Pune.

Congratulating the finalists, Hilde Schwab, Co-founder and Chairperson, Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, said, “The calibre of all finalist candidates is truly impressive. They all deserve recognition for their ground-breaking work to create a more inclusive India.”

Applauding the finalists, Shyam S Bhartia, Chairman and Founder and Hari S Bhartia, Co-Chairman and Founder, Jubilant Bhartia Group and Founder Directors of Jubilant Bhartia Foundation, said, “This is the ninth year of our enriching partnership with the Schwab Foundation. Through this association, we have been able to showcase the best and highlight various social issues and numerous possible ways to solve those. The platform of SEOY India Award has brought to the forefront, impactful social entrepreneurs bringing about a positive change and providing innovative solutions to the community. The three finalists of this year are unique in their own individual way.”

This year, the Award will be presented by Dr Rajiv Kumar, Vice Chairman, National Institution for Transforming India, NITI Aayog, Government of India on October 11, 2018 in New Delhi.

The SEOY India 2018 Award opened in March this year and received over 107 applications of exceptional quality. The finalists for this prestigious Award were identified based on rigorous due diligence process.

Through a five-stage selection process, the finalists were shortlisted after on-site visits, background research, reference checks and multiple rounds of deliberations. Education sector (47%) leads the nomination tally followed by Health (44%), Environment (43%) & Rural Development (42%). The other sectors which participated most actively were Enterprise Development, Technology, Water sanitation, communication/media and Microfinance.

About Video Volunteers run by Jessica Mayberry and Stalin K from Goa

70 per cent of India lives in its villages. But less than 2 per cent of media content relates to rural and marginal communities. As internet penetrates into remote locations, rural communities are becoming passive consumers of media; not active creators of content that will give them voice and representation.

To upturn this, Video Volunteers is building a community media model that enables marginalized citizens to become media content producers and use it to right the wrongs. VV has set up India Unheard – the country’s largest grassroots news agency that brings high quality video news reports from 200 of India’s poorest and ‘media-dark’ districts. 250 trained Community Correspondents (CCs) flank out into 2000 villages to conceive, produce and edit news videos on their mobile phones. They drill up ‘news by those who live it, telling stories that mainstream audiences typically don’t want to know. The CC’s come from Adivasi, Dalit, religious and sexual minority communities. All live before the poverty line. 57 per cent among them are women (against 25 per cent representation of women in national mainstream media) [1]. Their stories focus on gender, violence, untouchability, education, hunger, health, sanitation, forced eviction and other burning issues. Their videos are broadcast on mainstream news channels and digital media platforms. They are screened in remote corners by hyper local civil society networks.

Over 15 years, VV has published more than 5600 news videos and registered 4 million You Tube views a month. 25 per cent or 1 in 4 videos have created impact – i.e. resolved the issue that they raised - leading 4 lakh people to live improved lives. 300,000 rural citizens have viewed the videos through community screenings and 200,000 have engaged in action to change what they see around them. 400 government officials have been moved to reverse discriminatory norms.

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