Mumbai therapist Shabnam Rangwala wins global award for work with disability charity
Paediatric occupational therapist Shabnam Rangwala has won top honours at this year’s Bond International Development Awards. Bond is the leading United Kingdom body for organisations working in the field of international development.
Mumbai-based Shabnam Rangwala beat stiff competition to win top honours at the Bond International Awards Volunteer 2020. 54-year-old Shabnam, a paediatric occupational therapist and founder of Project Noor was shortlisted for her work with disability charity MAITS. The awards shine a light on exceptional people who have made an outstanding contribution to the world.
Due to the coronavirus travel restrictions, the annual award ceremony in London was cancelled this year. This means Shabnam will receive her winner trophy by post. She was presented with a temporary’ award by Ojas Bavishi, a beneficiary of her service as a paediatric therapist.
Shabnam devised a pioneering programme for disabled kids
Shabnam said she was immensely privileged to be declared the winner. “Being selected from a group of nominees who have done such pioneering work in their respective areas and countries makes me feel very humble and grateful”, said the 54-year-mother of two.
After having worked in the disability sector for over 33 years, I felt the need to expand my own journey in the social sector under my banner; Project Noor. This recognition will definitely make an impact in my journey and help me to reach more children and families of children with disability and bring them into the realm of inclusion.
My journey with MAITS since 2016 has also contributed to increasing the scope of my work along with adding an element of innovation to help look at sustainable models to promote inclusion in low resourced settings. – Shbnam Rangwala, Paediatric Occupational Therapist
Shabnam dedicated her award to all the families working to promote the rights of their children with disabilities.
Mike Wright, Director of Communications, Membership and Training at Bond said the awards are an opportunity to honour dedicated volunteers like Shabnam who work behind the scenes. “It is a great reflection of the hard work that goes on, often behind the scenes, by so many dedicated volunteers like Shabnam. It is a genuine pleasure to be honoring them and their fellow volunteers by shining a light on the inspirational people doing incredible work in development.”
Shabnam’s programme rolled out across Himachal Pradesh
The award judging panel hailed Shabnam won for her dedication to a very important issue, that is “working to improve the lives of people living with disabilities in the Global South. The reach of her work has been huge.” Shabnam was instrumental in getting her Community Health Worker programme introduced across Himachal Pradesh. She trained 35 government healthcare staff and 30 trainees from local NGOs, equipping them with knowledge to identify disabilities and break down the stigma surrounding disability.
Now in its seventh year, the awards celebrate the exceptional work undertaken in the development sector that often goes unrecognised. The Volunteer Award specifically honours the hidden heroes giving up their time and donating their skills, often in challenging and demanding environments.
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