Desh Apnayen stands for civic participation, awareness, leadership and innovation. In this blog, we shed some light on civic innovators to be reckoned with globally, and the world of good they are doing.
- Alessandra Orofino, Brazil
Political Mobilisation ActivistAfter working as a field researcher in Brazil and India, interviewing young girls who had been victims of domestic violence, Alessandra Orofino founded Meu Rio in 2011. The organization has fuelled bottom-up local politics using a combination of on-the-ground actions and custom-designed online and mobile platforms and apps.
Today, Orofino and her friend Miguel Lago, 26, are at the forefront of a growing effort to increase local civic engagement in politics. Meu Rio (My Rio), which they co-founded in 2011, has enabled thousands of ordinary citizens to become community activists (or agitadores) for causes that they care about—from the decriminalization of baile funk dance parties in Rio’s favelas to tracking city buses by GPS to improve transportation services.
- Yashveer Singh, India
Ashoka is the largest association of social entrepreneurs in the world – over the past 30 years, since its founding, it has built a global network of almost 3,000 social entrepreneurs in more than 70 countries. Its vision of ‘Everyone A Change Maker’ is aimed at providing each young individual the freedom, confidence, and social support to drive positive change. So far, Yashveer has groomed 31 social innovators in the space.
Source – Your Story
- The team at Northern Innovation Hub
Iqaluit, Nunavut, Canada
Northern Innovation Hub become the catalyst for further change in Iqaluit, where the city is in need for a space to facilitate the planning that is required for adaptation to the increasing local urbanization. This project, which won a contest sponsored by the Canadian Government, seeks to solve two problems in one go: taking disused sea shipping containers that litter the local coastline and repurposing them to provide badly needed commercial and residential space.
Source – Cities For People
- Jacek Strzemieczny, Poland
Center for Citizenship Education
After the collapse of communism in 1989, Poland underwent a political and economic transformation. Unfortunately, this process did not include education as a tool of change, and today most schools function as they did 20 years ago.
The Centre for Citizenship Education was created to encourage change in educational practices in Poland. In 15 years the centre has grown into a respected non-governmental organization capable of implementing projects on a national scale. CEO cooperates with Poland’s Ministry of Education in the application of educational reforms, including the development of better school curricula and new teaching and assessment methods, particularly the wider use of project-based learning and formative assessment.
It has helped more than 1000 schools become learning organizations that involve the entire school community, students and parents.
Source – Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship
Desh Apnayen celebrates these civic innovators and appreciates their courage, determination and fearlessness in the face of adversity. Let us hope our children light the way into the future as well.