The award results for the seventh annual Henry R. Kravis Prize in Leadership, which recognizes extraordinary leadership in the nonprofit sector, were announced on February 22. This year, in an unprecedented decision, two winners were selected to receive $250,000 each for their respective organizations.
The award recipients are Soraya Salti, regional director of the Arab educational mentoring program INJAZ Al-Arab and senior vice president of Middle East/North Africa for Junior Achievement Worldwide, and mothers2mothers (m2m), an organization that helps to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV/AIDS through the education and support of mothers with HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa. Both Ms. Salti and m2m will be presented with the Kravis Prize at a ceremony on March 21 on CMC's campus.
"INJAZ Al-Arab and m2m's mentoring programs, with their high level of precision and efficiency, have managed to empower historically underserved populations throughout the Middle East and Africa," said Henry Kravis, co-founder of KKR and founder of the Prize. "Soraya Salti is an extraordinary leader who took INJAZ Al-Arab from a challenged NGO to a gold standard educational organization that is changing the future for many Arab youth."
Salti is credited with implementing a mentorship program model within INJAZ Al-Arab that harnesses the mentorship of Arab business leaders to help inspire a culture of entrepreneurialism and business innovation among Arab youth. Founded in 2004, INJAZAl-Arab today operates in 15 countries across the Middle East and North Africa as a confederation of national operations. More than one million Arab youth have participated in the program to date.
"Access to the right education, training and mentorship is critical to providing Arab youth the skills they need to succeed. We owe this generation immediate action and an entrepreneurship education that can shift the reins of their economic destiny into their own hands," said Salti.
Headquartered in Cape Town with a network that spans seven African countries, m2m has developed a scalable grassroots model designed to partner with existing healthcare systems. Now in its eleventh year, the organization partners with mothers living with HIV to minimize the transmission of HIV/AIDS from mother to child and to educate women about the illness. As "Mentor Mothers," these women work for a daily wage alongside doctors and nurses in clinics and maternity wards and educate and support new mothers living with HIV.
"In Sub-Saharan Africa, m2m is actively providing a new level of hope to women afflicted with HIV/AIDS. Formerly relegated to the periphery of society, m2m has empowered these women to become community leaders and regain a sense of control over their own health and lives," said Kravis.
"Our decision to expand this year's award to include both Soraya Salti and m2m is a testament to the major role they have played in improving the lives of the communities they serve by providing effective solutions to significant social issues," said Marie-Josee Kravis, chair of the Prize Selection Committee. "m2m has enabled formerly disenfranchised women to become trusted counselors to their peers, and Ms. Salti has effectively utilized her business experience to transform INJAZ Al-Arab into a successful and widely-replicated program."