Mother Teresa Memorial Awards for Social Justice 2023 held in Mumbai

The awards celebrated global champions embodying 'Humanity in Action' at TAJ SANTACRUZ, Mumbai on 26th November 2023


New Delhi : The renowned Mother Teresa Memorial Awards for Social Justice 2023 were held on the topic of “Humanity in Action” on November 26th, 2023 at the Taj Santacruz in Mumbai.The Harmony Foundation honoured people and organisations for their remarkable and selfless services to mankind in its 19th year. The distinguished occasion was attended by the Honourable Governor of Maharashtra, H.E. Ramesh Bais, as Chief Guest, and the Hon. Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment of India, Shri. Ramdas Athawale, as Guest of Honour, among other dignitaries.

The award ceremony at the Taj Santacruz began with an homage to the 26/11 martyrs, those brave members of the Mumbai Police Force, the NSG commandos, and others who gave the ultimate sacrifice in the battle against terrorism, since they were the personification of humanity in its purest form.

The Mother Teresa Memorial Award for Social Justice, established in 2005, has recognised the dedicated efforts of people and groups all around the globe to promote peace, harmony, and social justice. Our distinguished prizes have gained the respect of significant authorities throughout the globe, including government chiefs, Nobel laureates, and famous personalities. The Mother Teresa Awards have been gracefully accepted by six Nobel Laureates, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who received the renowned accolade after obtaining the Nobel.

“Humanity in Action” was the topic of this year’s awards. In our society, which is riddled with continuous social difficulties, war, and misery, humanity is more needed than ever. Reciprocal animosity has recently devoured the fabric of peaceful cooperation among countries and groups. The news, whether local or global, is full of turmoil and controversy. The world is now afflicted with such demonic deeds of fanaticism. The Russian-Ukraine conflict in February of last year, as well as the present Israeli-Palestinian conflict, are two instances of ongoing issues in our globe today. During these vital times, symbols of humanity, such as the winners of our awards, make a practical impact in making our planet a better place and uplifting suffering humanity.

The awardees this year are humanitarians from throughout the globe who have worked tirelessly to promote compassion, offer a helping hand, and improve communities, exemplifying a spirit that closely resembles the deep legacy of the beloved saint, Mother Teresa:

HEIDI KUHN (World Food Prize 2023 recipient)- was awarded for her pioneering, seminal, and compassionate work through her organisation Roots of Peace, which has successfully transformed war-ravaged landmine zones into fertile farmlands, thereby fostering peace through agriculture.

Narges Mohammadi (Imprisoned human rights activist & 2023 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate) was awarded for her relentless and fearless efforts to be the voice of the voiceless and for her intrepid fight for the human rights of the oppressed, notably women and children suppressed by the fundamentalist forces in Iran. On behalf of Narges Mohammadi, the award was received by Ms.Ghazala a liberal Iranian woman who too stands for the cause of women’s rights. Mr Taghi Rahmani’s (Narges’s husband) message was shared at the awards function along with excerpts from Narges’s message for the foundation.

Judge Frank Caprio (World’s Nicest Judge)- was awarded for his humane approach to addressing offenders in the courtroom, which has played a pivotal role in restoring the public’s trust in the justice system and its dedication to ensuring fair and empathetic legal proceedings. Despite being unable to attend the event in person, Judge Frank Caprio graciously connected with us in real-time to convey his heartfelt thank-you message during the awards ceremony.

Esteemed organisation the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) was awarded for their compassionate commitment to safeguard the lives and dignity of individuals affected by armed conflicts and violence and to promote humanitarian law and universal humanitarian principles. Mr Kedir Awol Omar, ICRC’s Head of the Regional Delegation for India, Nepal, Maldives and Bhutan received the award on behalf of the notable organisation.

Seal Ashram was awarded for their compassionate dedication to not only rescue and rehabilitate the homeless and destitute found in Mumbai and its suburbs but also working relentlessly to reunite them with their families. The award was received by Rev.K.M. Philip, founder, of Seal Ashram.

Magic Bus was awarded for its remarkable dedication to uplift and empower adolescents and youth facing poverty in India through education, skills development, and the provision of vital support to help them build a sustainable future. Matthew Spacie, founder of Magic Bus, received the award on behalf of the organisation.

Snehalaya was awarded for its compassionate efforts in providing support for women and children affected by trafficking, sexual violence, HIV/AIDS, and poverty. Dr.Girish Kulkarni, founder of Snehalaya received the award on behalf of the organisation.

Shyam Kamble was awarded for his tireless efforts to rescue trafficked women and children in India, saving countless lives and inspiring change in the fight against human trafficking.

These awardees have not only excelled in their respective fields but have also exhibited a profound sense of empathy, compassion, and a genuine desire to make a positive difference. Each recipient has showcased a unique and impactful approach to fostering positive change and are a testament to the transformative power of compassion and inspires us all to contribute to the well-being of our global community.

The Harmony Foundation is a non-profit organisation based in Mumbai that hosts the prestigious Mother Teresa Memorial Awards for Social Justice annually to acknowledge and felicitate selfless individuals and organisations across the world for their selfless service to humanity and for having imbibed the compassionate qualities of Mother Teresa. The award is an annual event that celebrates and commemorates the legacy of Mother Teresa and is the only one endorsed by the Superior General of the Missionaries of Charity, Kolkata. It was instituted in 2005 in memory of Mother Teresa, who was canonised a saint by Pope Francis in the Vatican.