Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Mar 31:
Founder of Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) Dr Achyuta Samanta has been conferred with the World of Difference Awards-2013 by the US-based The International Alliance for Women (TIAW).
Samanta received the award from TIAW president Lisa Kaiser Hickey at a ceremony in Washington on March 27 for his work in the field of women’s empowerment.
The citation recognizes him as a “Champion of Women’s Economic Empowerment”.
Three Indians, including Dr Samanta, and four persons of Indian origin are among 100 recipients in different categories.
Samanta had set up a small school for the poor tribal children of Odisha in 1993 which has now grown into the largest residential institute in the world providing education, food, accommodation, clothing and health facilities free of cost to more than 20,000 tribal children of which about 50 percent are girls.
Not only this, Samanta is also promoting women empowerment through education, vocational training and employment opportunity.
A simple equation— “Poverty creates illiteracy and literacy eradicates poverty”— has inspired his vision and motivated him to work relentlessly to create an equitable society without poverty and ignorance by educating girls.
Women need to be the fundamental actors of the society, which motivated him to focus on ensuring that girls are educated, who in turn would educate the next generation, Samant says.
KISS has introduced various programmes like Life Skill Education in collaboration with UNFPA, vocational training, English Access Microscholarship Programme in collaboration with US Embassy and personality development to provide opportunity to the tribal girls to pursue a successful career.
Girls from remote tribal districts are pursuing rewarding careers in medicine, sports, economics, etc after passing out from KISS.
TIAW is a global community of economically empowered women across six continents aiming to leverage its reach and resources, creating a global community of economically empowered women.