Princess Sabeeka Bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa Global Award for Women’s Empowerment launched on the sidelines of the Generation Equality Forum

On the sidelines of the Generation Equality Forum co-hosted by the Governments of France and Mexico, UN Women in cooperation and partnership with the Supreme Council for Women of the Kingdom of Bahrain, hosted a virtual event to launch the second edition of the Princess Sabeeka Bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa Global Award for Women’s Empowerment.

The award aims to encourage and promote worldwide efforts for the empowerment of women and girls, while highlighting the achievements of individuals and institutions in this field. It recognizes achievements towards women’s empowerment across four categories: Public Sector, Private Sector, Civil Society Organizations and Individual Champions. The winner in each category will be awarded USD 100,000 to further sustain initiatives that support women.

HRH Princess Sabeeka Bint Ibrahim Al-Khalifa noted: “We are pleased with the initial response and impact of this Award, which was adopted by UN Women. We appreciate their valuable input along with its esteemed Jury Members, to accurately position and define the Award’s goals, allowing its participants to have the opportunity to promote and publicize their efforts in supporting women’s progress and enhance their role in advancing their society, and for us to celebrate these distinguished initiatives.”

“The Award shines a spotlight on the need for all segments of society to collaborate on the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, and on Sustainable Development Goal 5 in particular, to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls,” said Anita Bhatia, UN Women Deputy Executive Director. 

“I kindly invite institutions and individuals worldwide to share their success stories on such a platform that welcomes and applauds innovation that brings in new approaches to bridge gaps in favour of women of all ages and in various fields; while ensuring the sustainability of these initiatives during times of peace, stability, conflicts, disasters, and/or pandemics,” said H.E. Hala Al-Ansari, Secretary General of the Supreme Council for Women of the Kingdom of Bahrain.

During the online panel discussion, Ms. Yenny Wahid, Director of the Wahid Foundation from Indonesia said: “Empowering women brings great benefits to society. Only by empowering women we can achieve all the development goals we have set for humankind.”

Panelist Abdulrahman Jawahery, President of Gulf Petrochemical Industries Company from Bahrain, alluded to the role of private sector in advancing women’s economic empowerment: “Companies, by embracing and supporting women as workers, consumers, producers, and suppliers; act as a catalyst for change and a supportive partner in progress of women’s empowerment.”

Speaking at the panel, actress, model, and UN Women Asia-Pacific Regional Goodwill Ambassador Cindy Sirinya Bishop from Thailand, referred to how individuals can support women’s empowerment: “In this age of social media, individuals have the power to reach such a wider audience and many influencers are now using their platforms to empower, inspire and educate.”                               

Interested parties can apply or nominate an organization or individual, by completing the online form available on the Award’s official website, and uploading the required supporting files. Applications will be accepted until March 2022, with the winners announced later that year.

The inaugural winners of the Award , announced in 2019 were:

  • Public Sector: Abu Dhabi Police Force (UAE), for its initiative “Empowering Women for a Secure Society” to support and empower women in the police force at the local, regional and global levels.
  • Private Sector: Mahila Sahayatra Microfinance Bittiya Sanstha Ltd. (Nepal), for its initiative to empower disadvantaged women in Nepal’s mountainous region through access to microfinance services.
  • Civil Society Organization: Sustainable Development for All (Kenya), for its initiative “Use Solar Save Lives” to increase access to clean and affordable energy in rural communities to help families benefit from sustainable development.
  • Individual Champions: Dr. Kalpana Sankar (India), founder of Hand in Hand India, for providing digital and financial services to support livelihood activities by women entrepreneurs.

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