Thirty school students were recently felicitated at the 10th Annual Pramerica Spirit of Community Awards. The awards are given to young students who are working on making a difference in their communities. The children were felicitated with silver medallions and certificates of achievement. Anand Kumar, the “Super 30” founder, was the chief guest and presented the awards to the winners in Gurugram. Finalists were selected from over 3,000 applications received from students across the country in a nationwide search for the country’s top student volunteers.

The shortlisted applicants (16 in the Individual Category and 14 in the Group Category) have apparently worked on diverse community service projects and represent schools from various parts of the country including Delhi, Gurugram, Noida, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Chennai, Punjab, Rajasthan and Jharkhand. Projects include upgrading skills to empower people, creating employment opportunities for the marginalised, devising technology solutions to improve healthcare services, writing storybooks about social issues to create awareness among small children, setting up libraries, and promoting environment conservation.

The company spokesperson informs CauseBecause that approximately 65 per cent applications were from Tier 1 cities and the rest from Tier 2 cities and villages. All applications were screened by Kutumb Foundation., a 15-year-old not-for-profit organisation that works for the empowerment of disadvantaged young people. The short-listed applications were then forwarded to a jury for final selection.

The jury panel comprised of Gauri Sharma Tripathi, a UK-based Kathak artist, Prof. Neera Agnimitra, Head of School of Social Work, Delhi University, Manoj Gopalakrishna, CEO of CARE India, Mame Omar Diop, Head of Education & Programme Specialist, UNESCO New Delhi, and RJ Sayema from Radio Mirchi.

Two winners in the individual category were presented with gold medallions, certificates of excellence, a cash prize of Rs 50,000 each, and a return trip to Washington, DC, for the international felicitation ceremony. The members of the winner in the group category were presented with gold medallions, certificates of excellence, and a cash prize of Rs 50,000 to be shared among them.

The Pramerica Spirit of Community Awards was introduced in 2010 in India and is an annual nationwide search to identify and recognise school students in Classes VI–XII who have made a positive difference in their communities through voluntary community service. The awards programme is organised by Pramerica Life Insurance Co. Ltd and is the India chapter of the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards, the largest youth recognition programme in the United States based exclusively on volunteer service.