The International Women of Courage Award
The International Women of Courage Award was established by the U.S. Department of State in 2007 to honor women who are making a substantial difference in the lives of women around the globe. Nominated by U.S. embassies and NGOs, the candidates are selected by the State Department for their courageous and selfless efforts advocating for human rights, women’s equality, and social progress, often in the face of great personal risk. Honorees travel to the U.S. for an award ceremony at the State Department and an opportunity for cultural exchange across the country.
AWIU’s International Women of Courage Celebration
Since 2008, American Women for International Understanding has had the unique privilege to work with the State Department in hosting the International Women of Courage Celebration, an evening event that recognizes the awardees and celebrates their exemplary efforts. In addition, AWIU provides each of the awardees with a monetary grant to support continued efforts in her home country. The observance of International Women’s Day provides the backdrop for this prestigious dinner event.
Courage is the ability to challenge norms. It is the ability to move beyond words and act upon something that will challenge the present and bring change to the future.
I appreciate the work that American Women of International Understanding (AWIU) is doing to generate awareness on women’s issues around the globe. Their support, empathy, effort and time as a volunteer, to feature problems that women face within and outside the U.S. is simply commendable. Raising awareness on women’s issues is a crucial step towards progress and so is working together in global solidarity.
We can change the world. Without us, it will not be done. Hand in hand, we will make the world a better place.
Women leaders around the world are working on issues, which promote peace, justice, and progress for societies. As Margareth Mead famously said, all it takes to change the world is a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens. In their work, AWIU recognizes efforts and lasting achievements of women around the globe and encourages them to take action. Thus, this group of committed citizens becomes stronger and leads the world towards lasting peace, respect to human rights and international solidarity.
We are not driven by revenge But the desire that history never repeats itself.
Economies cannot prosper and countries cannot be free unless women are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve. That was as true in 2006 when we created this award as it is today. Together [the International Women of Courage] represent the leading edge of the women’s empowerment movement and are an inspiration to us all.