Chinmaya Mission UK is delighted to announce that Dr Kshama Metre, Founder and Director of Chinmaya Organisation for Rural Development (CORD) was declared winner of the Guardian International Development Achievement Award 2012 at the Royal Academy of Arts, London on 22nd November.
Watch Video (Dr Kshama Metre on award for improving health of rural poor in India) :
The prestigious annual award aims to celebrate one individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the lives of some of the world's poorest people. It recognises those whose work goes above and beyond the call of duty to make a difference, (supported by Marie Stopes International and run in partnership with Barclays and GSK.)
Following the screening of a short film about Kshamaji, she gave an acceptance speech emphasising the importance of a 'bottom up' approach to tackling poverty and engaging the marginalised in transforming their own condition, which has proved so effective through her own direct experience. Addressing a select crowd of development experts, corporate sponsors and journalists, Kshamaji paid tribute to Pujya Gurudev, and explained how meaningful change takes time, but is truly possible when you listen to, live and work alongside the poor communities you seek to uplift.
A paediatrician by profession, Dr Metre left her flourishing medical practice in Delhi in the early 1980s to serve in the tribal villages of the Himalayan Mountains, inspired by Pujya Swami Chinmayananda. She is an early pioneer of the microfinance movement in India, which today is the largest in the world. In 2008, the Government of India honoured her with India's highest award in the field of social service, the Padma Shree.
Her holistic model of tackling rural poverty addresses corruption through empowerment at the grassroots level, healthcare and nutrition, micro-banking and income generation, rehabilitation of children with disabilities, and natural resource management.
Read more about the Dr Metre and the award: