The Young Courage Award is a non-political recognition which aims to highlight actions of moral courage by young people. This year’s recipients have been selected from proposals from the public and local organizations in the participating pilot countries: France, Serbia, Spain and Hungary. The Swedish embassies in the four countries processed the nominations, after which a Swedish jury chose eight people who have contributed to a more humane society by acting courageously.
– The jury are honoured to have been commissioned to nominate the very first winners of the Young Courage Award. The standard of the international nominations was impressively high and it was a pure pleasure to participate in the jury work, says Jiloan Hamad, football player and jury member.
The eight recipients of the 2021 Young Courage Award are:
Victor Delyfer, 15, and Charles Delyfer, 17, France
The two brothers have funded the organisation Humans Unite Project, which helps people in need. Among many things, the organisation has raised money for robots to make it easier for children with leukemia to communicate with the outside world. It has also financed education for eight young Lebanese students who are affected by the corona situation in Beirut.
Victor Gardere, 16, France
Victor Gardere has been chosen for his innovative and successful work to combat illness during the pandemic. When malnutrition increased in schools as a result of the pandemic, Victor created a questionnaire for children in the danger zone about needs and resources. Based on the answers, he produced education material for schools and civil society, focusing on health and how to take care of food.
Marija Brletić, 18, Serbia
Since the age of 15, Marija Brletić has put great effort into organising several humanitarian arrangements for children who need expensive medical treatment, especially children from vulnerable and discriminated families. Marija has raised financial support by organising fundraising events.
Milica Jovanović, 18, Serbia
Milica Jovanović acted with compassion and civil courage in a critical situation. Milica, who is studying nursing, knows that people who have had an accident should not be moved. After witnessing a car accident, she prevented people from moving an injured man. The ambulance staff later verified that her intervention most likely prevented him from being paralysed. Milica now volunteers in covid ambulances.
Boglárka Kocsis, 19, Hungary
Boglárka Kocsis receives the award for educating her classmates about the dangers of hate-speech. She spoke up when some of her classmates started using hateful language and expressed support for conspiracy theories. Boglárka wrote an essay on the consequences of hate speech, which resulted in an engaged and lively classroom discussion. The outcome of her activities was that her classmates started addressing each other with more respect and tolerance.
Borbála Bozsó, 17, Hungary
Borbála Bozsó often stands up for human rights and speaks up against social injustices. She is engaged in combating sexual harassment among young people as well as supporting LGBTQ-rights and gender equality. For Borbála, it is self-evident that people should have equal rights and opportunities regardless of gender, race or national origin.
Sara Morales García, 18, Spain
Sara Morales García has been chosen for her efforts to make the world a better place. Sara participates in several social projects. One of these is “Acción con sonrisas” (Action for smiles) at Hospital Niño Jesús which aims to spread joy among children in palliative care. She also collects food for vulnerable families in the project “From family to family”.
Due to the corona restrictions, the international recipients will participate online during the official award ceremony in Stockholm on 27 August. This is Raoul Wallenberg’s Day, the national day for equal rights, and civil courage. It is the first national day in Sweden to commemorate and honour a civilian.
The international recipients will act as “Young Courage Ambassadors” and participate when Swedish embassies and consulates organise activities and seminars on civil courage, human rights or democracy.
The members of the jury were: Wendy Francis, educator and writer, Jiloan Hamad, football player, Beata Kull, entrepreneur and founder of an annual gala evening that awards teachers, Peter Rung, founder of an organization against domestic violence, and Oscar Zia, artist.
About the Young Courage Award
At the end of World War II, the Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg (link to RWA) saved tens of thousands of Hungarian Jews from the Holocaust. His courage and humanity continue to inspire people to this day.
Raoul Wallenberg Academy (RWA) introduced the Swedish award “Ungt Kurage” in 2015. The international equivalent, the Young Courage Award, was established in 2021 by the Swedish Institute, Swedish Embassies and RWA.
The Young Courage Award is a non-political award designed to highlight actions of moral courage in commemoration of the altruistic deeds carried out by Raoul Wallenberg. It is awarded to young people between the ages of 13 and 20, who with small resources have made a great human difference and shown evidence of moral courage and commitment,
Swedish embassies in the participating countries take part in the nomination process. A Swedish jury, appointed by RWA, then selects the winners.
About the Raoul Wallenberg Academy
Raoul Wallenberg Academy is a non-political independent fundraising foundation that strengthens youth to stand up for human rights and act with moral courage. The organization was founded in 2001 by among others Nina Lagergren, Raoul Wallenberg’s sister. Every year, RWA engages tens of thousands of young people in Sweden through leadership training and school programmes in human rights.