On behalf of the survivors of the Armenian Genocide and in gratitude to their saviors, the Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity will be granted annually to an individual whose actions have had an exceptional impact on preserving human life and advancing humanitarian causes. The Aurora Prize Laureate will be honored with a US $100,000 grant. In addition, that individual will have the unique opportunity to continue the cycle of giving by nominating organizations that inspired their work to receive a US $1,000,000 award.
The inaugural Aurora Prize will be awarded on April 24, 2016 in Yerevan, Armenia.
The $1 million award for the first Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity will fund projects in Rwanda, Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Brazil. The proceeds will support initiatives that are combatting child poverty and advancing aid and rehabilitation for child refugees and orphans. As Aurora Prize Laureate, Marguerite Barankitse – founder of Maison Shalom and the REMA Hospital in Burundi – received a $100,000 grant, and was offered a chance at even greater impact by nominating humanitarian organizations which would receive the Prize’s $1 million award. Ms. Barankitse chose longtime partners: Fondation du Grand-Duc et de la Grande-Duchesse; Fondation Jean-François Peterbroeck; and Fondation Bridderlech Deelen. Those three organizations announced the projects they have chosen as recipients of the funds.Open »
Nominations open on June 1, for the Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity, an annual international humanitarian award. The Aurora Prize is seeking personal stories of individuals who have put themselves at personal risk for the sake of others. Nominations are open to the public from now until September 9, 2016 at www.auroraprize.com. The Aurora Prize is seeking personal stories of individuals who have put themselves at personal risk for the sake of others. Anyone can nominate a candidate they believe has overcome great personal challenges to make an exceptional impact on preserving human life and advancing humanitarian causes. A description of the Prize criteria and selection process can be found here: https://auroraprize.com/en/prize/detail/nominationsOpen »
In her first public address as Aurora Prize Laureate, Marguerite Barankitse will discuss how grassroots initiatives in conflict-afflicted communities are influencing humanitarian engagement and shifting the rules of engagement. Marguerite will participate in the ‘People at the Centre’ Special Session during the two-day Summit in Istanbul, Turkey.Open »
Marguerite Barankitse from Maison Shalom and REMA Hospital in Burundi was named as the inaugural Laureate of the $1 million Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity. At a ceremony held in Yerevan, Armenia, Barankitse was recognized for the extraordinary impact she has had in saving thousands of lives and caring for orphans and refugees during the years of civil war in Burundi. As the first Aurora Prize Laureate, Barankitse will receive a $100,000 grant and continue the cycle of giving by donating the accompanying $1,000,000 award to organizations that have inspired her work. Barankitse plans to donate the award to three organizations in order to advance aid and rehabilitation for child refugees and orphans, and fight against child poverty. These organizations are: the Fondation du Grand-Duc et de La Grande-Duchesse du Luxembourg, Fondation Jean-François Peterbroeck (JFP Foundation), and the Fondation Bridderlech Deelen Luxembourg.Open »
The Laying of the Flowers Ceremony takes place on April 24, the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. This ceremony is presided over by the President of Armenia and religious leaders at the Armenian Genocide Memorial or ‘Tsitsernakaberd’. George Clooney and fellow Selection Committee members joined the Aurora Prize co-founders, finalists and other special guests at the memorial. Guests also participated in a private tour of the adjoining Armenian Genocide Memorial Museum.Open »
George Clooney, Aurora Prize Selection Committee Co-Chair, and Vartan Gregorian, Aurora Prize Co-Founder and Member of the Selection Committee, participated in a high-level panel discussion exploring key issues relating to the prevention of humanitarian catastrophes, as well as the consequences of genocide for affected populations. The session will be chaired by David Ignatius, columnist and associate editor of the Washington Post. Fellow members of the panel include Andrew Woolford, President of the International Association of Genocide Scholars, and Joe Verhoeven, Judge ad hoc, International Court of Justice. The session will follow a welcoming address by Serzh Sargsyan, President of the Republic of Armenia.Open »
Students participated in a Q&A with Mr Clooney and Ruben Vardanyan, co-founder of both the Aurora Prize and UWC Dilijan College. Mr Clooney met Pamela Tebchrany, the first recipient of an annual scholarship granted by 100 LIVES in the name of Amal Clooney. The Amal Clooney Scholarship offers one female student from Lebanon a place on a two-year international baccalaureate program at UWC Dilijan. Recipients will be chosen annually based on their exemplary academic performance and demonstrable interest in the promotion of human rights and international issues.Open »
On Saturday, April 23, 100 LIVES and the Aurora Prize hosted the Aurora Dialogues - a series of insightful discussions between leading humanitarians, academics, philanthropists and media experts on some of today’s most pressing global challenges. Through a series of keynote speeches, panel discussions and Q&A sessions, the Aurora Dialogues encouraged conversations that explored the importance of learning from the past, acting in the present, and fostering a better future. Discussion topics will include the state of humanitarian issues, the global refugee crisis, the role of women in the humanitarian community and the role of media in bringing humanitarian crises to the world’s attention, among others.Open »
The co-founders of 100 LIVES and the Aurora Prize Selection committee – co-chaired by Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel and Academy Award-winning actor and humanitarian George Clooney – will honor the Aurora Prize finalists for their exceptional acts of humanity with a weekend of events from April 22 through April 24, 2016. On behalf of the survivors of the Armenian Genocide, and in gratitude to their saviors, the Aurora Prize celebrates the strength of the human spirit that compels action is the face of adversity. The weekend of events, hosted in Yerevan, Armenia, will encourage discussion of some of the most pressing humanitarian issues the world is facing today, and honor those helping to address them. The weekend’s events will culminate in the inaugural Aurora Prize ceremony, honoring four finalists for their exceptional acts of humanity and presenting the final recipient with the award.Open »
The four Aurora Prize finalists have named the organizations they nominate to receive the $1,000,000 award should they be announced as Aurora Prize Laureate on April 24th at theinaugural Aurora Prize Ceremony. If named the Aurora Prize Laureate, he or she will be granted the unique opportunity to continue the cycle of giving by allocating the $1,000,000 award to the nominated organization or organizations. The four finalists for the inaugural Aurora Prize are: Marguerite Barankitse of Maison Shalom and REMA Hospital in Burundi. Marguerite Barankitse saved thousands of lives and cared for orphans and refugees during the years of civil war in Burundi. To date, she has saved an estimated 30,000 children and in 2008, she opened a hospital which has treated more than 80,000 patients thus far. Dr. Tom Catena of Mother of Mercy Hospital in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan. Dr. Tom Catena is an American physician and the sole doctor of the Mother of Mercy Hospital in rebel-held territory in the Nuba Mountains, Sudan. Despite several bombings by the Sudanese government, Dr. Catena resides on the hospital grounds so that he may be on call at all times. Syeda Ghulam Fatima, the General Secretary of the Bonded Labor Liberation Front in Pakistan. Syeda Ghulam Fatima has worked tirelessly to eradicate bonded labor, one of the last remaining forms of modern slavery, liberating thousands of Pakistani workers. Father Bernard Kinvi, a Catholic priest in Bossemptele in the Central African Republic. Father Bernard Kinvi has provided refuge and health services to those on both sides of the civil war in the Central African Republic through his mission in Bossemptele. He has saved hundreds of people from persecution and death. The four finalists were each asked to shortlist up to three organizations that they would nominate for a share of the $1,000,000 award if they are named Aurora Prize Laureate later this month. This $1,000,000 award will be given in addition to a personal $100,000 grant for the Laureate. Selection Committee Co-Chair George Clooney will announce the inaugural Aurora Prize Laureate during a ceremony in Yerevan, Armenia on April 24, 2016.Open »
Nominations are open for the Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity, a new annual international humanitarian award to be given to a person or a group of people who put themselves at risk to enable others to survive.Open »
The Aurora Prize Selection Committee announced the four Aurora Prize finalists as Marguerite Barankitse, from Maison Shalom and REMA Hospital in Burundi; Dr. Tom Catena, from Mother of Mercy Hospital in the Nuba Mountains of Sudan; Syeda Ghulam Fatima, the General Secretary of the Bonded Labor Liberation Front in Pakistan; and Father Bernard Kinvi, a Catholic priest in Bossemptele in the Central African Republic.Open »