On Wednesday, the Right Livelihood Award, which is also known as the ‘Alternative Nobel’ was awarded to four winners for empowering communities around the world. The award was shared by three activists and an organisation that work in the areas ranging from child protection to environmental defence.
The winners of the prize were Marthe Wando, Vladimir Slivyak, Freda Huson and Legal Initiative for Forest and Environment (LIFE). The Swedish Right Livelihood Foundation, said that the 2021 Right Livelihood Award Laureates proved that solidarity is the key for a better future for all of us, in the face of intensifying climate crisis, corporate interests and terrorist threats.
Marthe Wandou, was awarded for her contributions to the field of gender and peace. She worked for the prevention of sexual violence against women since 1990s. Her works were centred around Cameroon’s Lake Chad area, caring for girls and victims of sexual abuse.
Vladimir Slivyak, a Russian environmental campaigner, was honored for his efforts in igniting grassroot oppositions against nuclear industries and coal power plants in the country. Ecodefense, was co-founded by Slivyak, which is one of the leading environmental organisations in Russia.
Freda Huson, received her award for her works and contributions to defend the land of indigenous people from destructive pipe line projects in Canada. The indigenous rights campaigner of Wet’suwet’en people in Canada, was fearless and dedicated to reclaim the culture of her people.
Legal Initiative for Forest and Environment (LIFE), an India-based organisation was awarded for it’s work which contributed to the empowerment of vulnerable communities in India. They supported the communities with legal support and used law and legal processes to help the communities stand up for themselves against powerful external interests.
Ole von Uexkull, head of the Right Livelihood, stated that the four laureates were courageous mobilisers who showed the world what peoples’ movements could achieve.