2016 Award Recipients
Binalakshmi Nepram is a dynamic and courageous activist, writer and advocate for promoting peace through arms reduction and is working towards a disarmament movement in India. She belongs to Manipur state in the North East Region, where insurgency and armed conflict has been rampant for more than 40 years.
Ruth Ojiambo Ochieng
Ruth Ojiambo Ochieng has been involved for many years in international women’s rights efforts and most recently in the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict. Ruth has worked for over two decades to advance women’s rights and promote peace and security across Africa—building vibrant support networks of women activists across borders.
Ana Luz Mamani Silva
Ana Luz Mamani Silva is a sex worker from Arequipa in Southern Peru who together with colleagues founded an organization to fight for the human and labour rights of sex workers: Asociación de Trabajadoras Sexuales Mujeres del Sur (Sex Worker Association Women of the South). Sex work is not criminalized in Peru, but sex workers nevertheless experience a lot of violence and stigma.
Leigh Ann van der Merwe
Ms. van der Merwe is a passionate and determined African trans feminist who is committed to fighting for a world where there is justice and equality for all women. She is the founder and Coordinator of S.H.E., a feminist collective of trans and intersex women which works to build an African trans feminist movement through feminist leadership development, and by building relationships with women’s and trans’ rights organizations across the continent.
Fatuma Kinsi Abbas
Mrs Abbas leads the Pastoralist Girls Initiative (PGI), a Kenyan group which works with Somali girls and women living in the Garissa county of Kenya. Since the beginning of its activities in 2001, PGI, under the leadership of Mrs Abbas, has been organizing and empowering Somali girls and women to become visible, confront and stop violence against women and girls, and challenge traditions that relegate them at the margins of their communities.
Leticia Toj Umil de Méndez
Leticia is the Executive Director of Rxiin Tnamet, a local community health organization in Guatemala. An incredible leader who has been working in community health for 30 years. She was discriminated against both for being a woman and for being indigenous. Nevertheless, she remained determined to work to ensure communities’ improved access to health services.
Anuradha’s Bhosale is a renowned grassroots women’s rights and anti-child labor activist based in the Kolhapur district, Maharashtra, India where more than 35,000 children are involved in daily labor for local industries. A former child-laborer herself at the age of six, she has spent the past 20 years fighting for the prevention of child exploitation, labor, trafficking, and female infanticide.
Rita Thapa is paving a path for a new generation of NGO feminist leaders, peace activists, gender justice advocates, and social philanthropists. Rita’s huge heart and benevolence for all humanity maps her road as she inspires people worldwide to donate time, money and energy. Projects are approached with great love, inspired ideas, innate grace and erudite wisdom.
Rasha is a gender rights advocate in Yemen and the Founder of Yemeni Youth for Humanitarian Relief. Yemeni Youth for Humanitarian Relief (YYHR) is a youth leaded initiative to facilitate a rapid response to humanitarian crisis and relief Yemeni families from any man-made or natural disasters. A regional media and advocacy officer for Oxfam in Beirut, she has been working on the Syria crisis and refugee policy, including amplifying voices of refugees.
Nasrin Sotoudeh has represented prisoners of conscience, Iranian opposition activists and politicians, journalists, abused children and mothers working to protect their abused children from being returned to their abusive fathers, and prisoners sentenced to death for crimes committed when they were minors. She has also highlighted the execution of juveniles and Iran’s high rate of executions.