First Published in Economic Affairs (Apr 2014) P-36
They conquered Everest in their spare time & crafted empires; their names were featured in Forbes ‘30 under 30’. Somewhere along the way they had reset the bar. Their contributions had not gone un-noticed.
The people who had made the list included trailblazers, trendsetters, risk-takers & crusaders, seen at the 6th LADIESFUND® Annual Women’s Awards. An event to salute an unlikely band of heroes who left a legacy of courage & compassion also acknowledged exceptional women on the rise.
LADIESFUND® launched by Dawood Global Foundation (2007) & headed by Tara Uzra Dawood, celebrates these achievements by adding powerhouse women and their noble causes to their wall of fame. It also makes its core mission - Educate 1000 Girls, the lynchpin & encourages the entrepreneur within our ranks. The talented Alycia Dias, who performed the anthem & walked away with a musical scholarship, would be joined by other hopefuls, awarded with fellowships, grants or monetary support to kick-start their fledgling careers.
The (late) Parveen Rahmen, director OPP (Orangi Pilot Project) the biggest poverty alleviation scheme worldwide that helps 3 million people and serves as a model project would be posthumously awarded the ‘Courage Award’ along with (late) Zahra Shahid Hussain (PTI). While their struggles underscore the volatile landscape & successes often get eclipsed by tragic headlines, these are the voices capable of overriding the prevalent narrative of despair.
There were a few brave men on hand – including Faisal Qureshi (PTV host - Perspectives) who had graciously agreed to host (but had to leave midway), & British / Indonesian Council Generals who acted as presenters.
People’s Choice Award (2014) Woman of the Year (mountaineer Samina Khayal Baig), Trailblazer Award (Khalida Brohi - founder Sughar program that empowers village women & honor killings), Momentum Award (Angie Marshall (award winning makeup artist who styled 3rd runner up Miss Universe 2011).