His Highness the Aga Khan, the chairman of the Global Centre for Pluralism, on Wednesday presented the inaugural Global Pluralism Award at a ceremony at the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat in Ottawa, Canada.
Among the three winners is Kenyan conflict mediator and gender equity advocate Alice Nderitu. The other two are Leyner Palacios of Colombia and Daniel Webb of Australia. They were recognised for their commitment to building more inclusive, peaceful societies.
“The example set by others can be a powerful source of inspiration — and that is why the Global Centre for Pluralism has established these awards,” said His Highness the Aga Khan.
Former prime minister of Canada and chair of the award Joe Clark described pluralism as “the deliberate choice to respect and value diversity.”
“Through their accomplishments, each of the finalists has demonstrated that welcoming diversity has positive outcomes for all — peace, reconciliation and a better life,” said Mr Clark.
Each of the winners received 50,000 Canadian dollars from the Global Centre for Pluralism to further their work.
The award was envisioned by His Highness the Aga Khan to celebrate extraordinary examples of pluralism in action. It was launched in a year that is significant for both the Global Centre for Pluralism, Centre’s founders — the Aga Khan and the government of Canada.
His Highness the Aga Khan is commemorating his Diamond Jubilee — marking 60 years as the spiritual leader of Shia Ismaili Muslims and of building institutions dedicated to improving quality of life.
Canadians on the other hand are marking their 150th anniversary. Nominations for the 2019 Award will be accepted from March next year.